The Diets of Companion Cats in Aotearoa New Zealand: Identification of Obesity Risk Factors.

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MDPI (Basel, Switzerland)
(c) 2021 The Author/s
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One in four New Zealand cats are overweight or obese, conditions associated with poor health outcomes. As part of an online survey that was conducted from January 2019 to March 2019, NZ residents aged ≥18 years were asked demographic questions along with questions related to the body condition, breed and diet of their cat/s. From the responses, possible owner-related risk factors for developing obesity were identified. Of the respondents, 65.5% (n = 1537) owned cat/s; the owners being more likely to be female, live rurally, or live with children. Most of the respondents fed their cat/s biscuits from the supermarket (63%) and wet food (57%). Almost half (45%) fed their cat/s specialised food from a pet shop or veterinary clinic and gave them treats, with 31% of respondents feeding their cat/s raw meat. Feeding cats a variety of food types may make it difficult to estimate the appropriate amount of each needed to avoid excess caloric intake. In addition, approximately 30% of the respondents did not agree with the correct body condition statement, revealing a need for owner education. These findings highlight important areas of cat nutrition requiring future research to better inform the development of healthy weight interventions for NZ cats.
New Zealand, body condition, cats, companion animal, diet, feline, food, obesity, pet
Forrest R, Awawdeh L, Esam F, Pearson M, Waran N. (2021). The Diets of Companion Cats in Aotearoa New Zealand: Identification of Obesity Risk Factors.. Animals (Basel). 11. 10. (pp. 2881-).