The Cat Diet

Pet owners and parents have at least one thing in common. We all want our “babies” to be healthy and happy. One of the ways we do this is by taking them to the doctor for check-ups and anytime we think they might be sick.
Gypsy usually has good check-ups, with the exception of one thing, her diet. A few years ago, she gained 2 pounds in 1 year and the vet said she needed to go on a diet because that was too much weight for her to be carrying around. He told me to actually measure out her food for the day instead of just filling her bowl when it was empty. She was due back in 2 weeks to see how it was going. 2 weeks came and she hadn’t lost any weight. I was forced to cut her back again and re-visit in a month. The portion was so small, if it had been my body, I would have gone into starvation mode. I took her back yet again and of course she hadn’t lost anything. He wanted me to cut her back again, 1/4 cup of food for the whole day. I drew the line, I told the vet Gypsy already acts hungry and gobbles up the food the second I put it in her bowl and that I’m not willing to starve her further.
Currently, Gypsy gets 1/3 cup of food for the day since I refused to go lower than that. She still weighs 11.3 pounds. She still meows and begs for food and I still have to deny her it if she’s eaten her ration for the day.
I feel so guilty everyday. Here I am a healthy, curvy woman, consuming about 2,000 calories a day while my poor cat consumes under 300 calories a day and is a curvy, starving, grey fluffball of a cat. She doesn’t appear to be suffering from her 2 pound weight gain from 3 years ago. She still keeps herself clean, she doesn’t get exhausted easily, and when provoked she is energetic. She does have the slight beginnings of arthritis in one of her back legs, but that is partially her breed and partially due to older age. She still goes in for check-ups, shot updates, and of course when she looks sick. Whenever she does go in, the diet question always comes up. The cat diet plagues me daily. The second I wake up in the morning and hear her calling for me, it starts. The guilt comes creeping up on me. I measure out her measly ration of food for the day and serve her the bowl. She hungrily eats it as I watch to make sure the bullies in the house don’t scare her away and eat it. Does Gypsy resent me for only giving her a small amount of food? Does she love me less? How would I feel if some crazy owner was rationing out my food because the vet thought my curvy figure was too fat? I’d go nuts on the vet, my owner, and probably try to run away. I’ve gone to the same vet with her for 11 years, I trust him, but I really don’t agree with the whole cutting the food back thing. I’ve thought about getting a second opinion, but then again I wouldn’t listen to it if it was the same as his. Do you have your cat on a diet? Do you ever feel guilty for depriving your baby of food?

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