Do British Shorthairs Get Fat?

Are you seeing your shorthair a little over the top with its weight? Obesity can be a nightmare for cat owners as it a nutritional disease and one of the growing problems related to the cat. British Shorthairs are right on top of the competition when it comes to gaining weight faster. So, it is very necessary to know what British Shorthairs are like to know about their average weight and size. Does the British Shorthair get fat? Is overweight an issue related to British Shorthair?

Yes, British Shorthair is at the risk of getting fat because of their love for food. Obesity is a burning problem related to British Shorthair making them stay away from carbs as far as possible. British Shorthair typically weighs between 7 to 15 pounds on average while growing up. So, if they weigh any more than this, then it is certain that your shorthair is overweight.

The questions don’t end here, do they? What should you do when your British Shorthair gets overweight? How can you stop your British Shorthair from getting overweight? What are the issues that obesity brings to your British Shorthair? These are few questions and there are more of them, you probably want answers to.

In this article, you will find answers to most of the important questions. So, go through this and learn what it’s like to have a cat such as British Shorthair that is prone to get fat.

Average British Shorthair Size

You can’t know if your shorthair is overweight or not unless you know what is their average weight and height. The average weight of the British Shorthairs when they reach maturity is what you need to maintain throughout their life.

One British Shorthair passes through various phases of life and its weight may vary at every point. An adult British Shorthair weighs around 7 to 10 pounds on average.

Here is a table to help you to know the average weight of your shorthair while growing up:

Birth3 to 4 ounces
2 weeks6 to 8 ounces
5 weeks1 pound
10 weeks2 pounds
16 weeks5 pounds
20 weeks (5 months)6 pounds
24 weeks (6 months)8 pounds
12 months and further7 to 15 pounds

Overweight British Shorthair

Your British Shorthair loves food more than anything else in the world. They like food and will keep on eating till you stop them.

That’s why overweight can be an issue with these cats if you are not careful enough. If your shorthair gains weight over 15 pounds, that’s when you need to get worried.

If the weight of your British Shorthair is 10% more than that of the average weight, then your shorthair is considered overweight.

An overabundance of nutrients that cats get from the food they intake is the prime cause for them to be overweight. Likewise, if their weight is 20% more than the average weight, then they are obese or getting to the obesity level.

Obesity is never a good thing and is a nutritional disease that can bring so many complications in your British Shorthair.

Do British Shorthairs Get Fat?

Yes, every time you go to research about the diet and feeding habits of British Shorthair, you will come across the terms ‘overweight and overfeeding’.

This is because of the likeliness of British Shorthair getting fat even if they eat less food with high carbs.

British Shorthair is a medium-sized cat that doesn’t look fluffy like British shorthair rather they have a slender and strong body.

But once they get around food or starts eating without supervision, they will not stop till they finish the food. That’s why you should know how to properly feed your British Shorthair.

They have the worst habit of overeating food and not knowing when to stop. British Shorthairs are often talked about being hungry more with no such physical activity.

Your British Shorthair does get fat because it is an indoor cat that is mostly inactive, fewer exercises, and sits idly most of the time. So, you should train your British Shorthair from time to time to burn their excess body fat and make them healthy.

These cats need low energy and fewer calories per day to maintain the ideal weight but overeating can abolish this.

How Can You Know If Your British Shorthair Is Fat Or Fit?

How Can You Know If Your British Shorthair Is Fat Or Fit?

British Shorthair has a double-coated, slender yet muscular body, so it can be quite difficult to understand overweight with them.

You can visit the Vet for a routine check-up and ask to see if your British Shorthair is overweight or not. They will calculate the Body mass index of the cat and let you know if you have to do something about the cat’s diet or not.

Apart from the expert’s advice, there are few things you can do yourself to know if your shorthair is fat or fit:

The Waist

A different angle for the view of your shorthair can do the job for you sometimes. What you need to do is look your British Shorthair from the above angle.

If you can see the space between their hip protrudes and the ribs, or their waist, then your shorthair is fit. But if you cannot see the space or waist of your shorthair then you have to think about the way to make your shorthair lose weight.

The Abdomen

You know when a man gains weight, it is clearly seen from the way his tummy starts growing. It is quite similar to cats as well.

As you have already seen your shorthair from the above angle, let’s go to the other angle. Look at your shorthair from the side angle to see if there is a layer of low fat hanging around the abdominal region.

The low hanging fat is the clear sign of weight gain or in other words overweight. your shorthair is fit, not fat if you don’t notice any fat hanging around their belly.

The Spine

Now it’s time to groom your shorthair and feel their spine. Here is what you have to do, you have to run your hands across the back of your British Shorthair.

If you can feel the bones across their area, then great, your shorthair is fit. However, if you can’t feel those bones, then it is probably because of the layer of fat between bones and skin.

The Ribs Of Your British Shorthair

Alike the spine case, you have to use your hands for this experiment as well. You have to run your hands-on cat’s body again but this time on their side not back.

If you can’t feel their ribs while running your hands on their sides, then sorry to say your shorthair is fat. That sounds rude and ruthless, but that a fact.

You can feel the ribs of your shorthair with a little hint or covering of fat when it is healthy and fit.

What Causes A British Shorthair To Be Overweight?

Most of the time people associate overweight with overeating but cases can be different sometimes. Other factors might cause your shorthair to gain weight without you even realizing it.

Do not judge unless you know for the fact that British Shorthair is fat due to overeating carbs, not anything else.


As already said, and you might know, overeating is a prime cause of overweight and we cannot deny that.

Your British Shorthair loves food and won’t stop eating or know it is full till you stop them from it. Their body doesn’t digest carbs well and the more they eat the more weight they gain.


British Shorthair are indoor cats that have very few activities to do inside the house. Likewise, they don’t get proper exercise when all they do is sit around all day.

Lack of proper training and exercise for indoor British Shorthairs acts like a precursor for weight gain making them fat and lazy. Boredom also intervenes when your shorthair does no outdoor activities or very few activities.

Even human beings have the habit to overeat when they are bores, how can a cat be any different? Boredom and inactivity lead to eating to pass the time, thus the unwanted weight addition.


British Shorthairs are restricted to have more carbs in their diet and suggested eating more animal proteins. Sometimes you may feed them food enriched with carbohydrates without knowing the consequences.

Carbs can make your British Shorthair grow in weight due to inactivity and lack of exercise to digest it properly.

You have to take care of their diet so that they can’t gain unwanted weight over stupid circumstances.

It is better to switch to homemade foods as most of the commercial foods are based on high carbs and plant-based proteins.


Even human beings slow down and take rest when they get old, and cats follow them in this case. The activity level plummets as they get tired and weak with old age.

The inactivity and lack of exercise can cause weight gain in adult cats, so older cats are more prone to this.

Side Effects Of Medication

Some of the medicines you use while your shorthair is sick can make them gain weight. Ask your vet beforehand if the medications you are using for your shorthair have side effects or not.

Medical Condition

If your shorthair is suffering from hypothyroidism, it can slow down the metabolism process as the thyroid gland produces the hormones that control the cat’s metabolism.

Thus, this can result in weight gain, so bring them to the vet as soon as you see them gaining sudden weight.

Neutering Or Spaying The Cat

It is believed that spayed and neutered cats gain more weight than the normal queen and toms. That might be because of the hormonal change or lack of physical activity, these cats can barely burn calories.

Why Does It Matter If Your British Shorthair Is Overweight?

Why Does It Matter If Your British Shorthair Is Overweight?

Obesity is a nutritional disease that brings other health issues to your shorthair. It is a nightmare for someone who has British Shorthair as their pet.

The excessive fat present in the body of your British Shorthair for a long period can bring adverse negative effects to their health.

The reduction of life expectancy and the occurrence of other serious disorders are not the things you want for your shorthair. Obese British Shorthair lifespan is shorter than the normal and fit British Shorthair and it is a proven fact.

It matters subsequently if your shorthair is overweight as it can be a serious problem. Health issues like diabetes, you cannot pet a cat that is not healthy as their body will not respond properly hence an unhappy cat.

Also, an obese cat is at higher risk to die while performing a surgical procedure. The effects of obesity on the lungs and heart of cats can make them prone to more surgical risks than normal cats.

The anesthesia that is used to make the cat unconscious during surgery cannot metabolize properly in the body of a fat cat.

It can be risky as the doctors might have to increase the anesthetic dose and have the chance to overdose the cat in the process.

Likewise, the doctor will have difficulty to reach the surgical target with all the thick layers of fat around it.

Moreover, the unwanted weight or excessive weight in the cat’s body can be a burden for their legs, joints, tendons, and ligaments.

British Shorthair likes to jump into the bookshelves and rest there, with all the extra body weight, jumping and climbing can get difficult.

Can Obesity Cause Health Issues In British Shorthair?

Yes, obesity, as already stated, is a nutritional disease and can bring various health issues to your shorthair. British Shorthair is not prone to disease but additional fat in the body can make their immune system weak.

Here are a few diseases that might hamper your obese British Shorthair:

High Blood Pressure

Extra fats act like an additional burden for the heart, hence develops high blood pressure. The heart has to work harder to pump the blood to transport it all over the body.


The insulin that the body requires exceeds the ability of the body to produce insulin when the cat gets overweight.

This incapacity to produce or use insulin in the body of a cat leads to diabetes mellitus.

Breathing Difficulty

The ability of the lungs to expand is restricted when the fat is disposed of in the chest and abdomen. This can make the breathing process difficult and tiring for your British Shorthair.

Fatty Liver Disease

When the fats are accumulated inside the liver cells, causes liver dysfunction which is known as Fatty liver disease or Hepatic Lipidosis.

If this disease is left untreated or unaccounted for, this can be fatal and kill your British Shorthair.

Urinary Tract Disease

Many types of urinary tract problems like stones, injury, blockage, chronic pain syndrome, etc. can result from obesity in British Shorthairs too.

If you don’t monitor closely for the symptoms of these diseases, you might lose your shorthair as these diseases are fatal too.


The obese cat often suffers from constipation as they are more likely to have a weak digestive system too. The fat disposition can not only harm the immune system but also the bowel movements of your British Shorthair.

There is a chance of cancer, skin fold pyodermas to occur to these cats due to overweight and obesity.

What Can You Do To Avoid British Shorthair Getting Overweight?

As it is crystal clear that obesity can be a curse for your shorthair, you have to do something to prevent it beforehand.

There are few things you can do for your British Shorthair to help them stay fit not fat or obese.


You need to feed your British Shorthair foods that are high on animal proteins but less on carbs. British Shorthair is indoor cats so it is necessary to give them food that can easily be digested without exercises.


You need to provide certain games to your British Shorthair that can be physically and mentally tiring. These indoor cats are restricted to outside activity so they need means to burn calories inside their home.

This can help you to keep the weight of your shorthair in check and prevent them from being overweight.

Expert’s Advice

If your shorthair is under any kind of medication, ask your vet about the side effects of those medicines. And if the side effects bear obesity too, ask him/her to suggest some technique to keep the weight ideal.

Expert’s opinion on certain things can change the dynamic of the situation rather than dwelling over the problem.

What Are The Basic Ways To Help Your British Shorthair Lose Weight?

As long as you can prevent the weight gain process of your British Shorthair, do that so they don’t put on some extra weight.

Overweight and obesity, as mentioned above, can bring complications and health issues for your shorthair. That’s why you need to do certain things to help them lose weight.

Consult Your Vet

Once you find out that your shorthair is obese or overweight, bring them to the vet immediately. They will start the obesity treatment as soon as possible.

This treatment will help to lose body weight as well as maintain it afterward. The diet plan that your vet gives you will help your shorthair lose weight without complications.

Follow-up every month to monitor the weight change of the cat and communicate with your vet regularly.


The key to helping your shorthair lose the extra weight is monitoring their calorie intake and exercise. Your vet might provide you a diet plan for both short-term and long-term, but it comes down to you to feed them properly.

As long as Foods and the feeding frequency are in check and done properly, there is a very low chance of your shorthair putting extra weight.

But once they do you have to monitor every single thing they eat. You need to check the calorie intake and types of food they eat.

Diet, as recommended for British Shorthair obese or not, that has high animal proteins as well as fibers but low in fat is recommended even when they get fat.

The dietary protein present in the food stimulates the metabolic process and energy loss while giving the cat feeling of fullness.

This will stop the British Shorthair to feel hungry more and eat frequently. Once the feeding frequency is slowed down along with the food quantity, the weight loss process begins soon.

Fibers present in the food provide less energy but stimulates metabolism in the intestine and use of energy simultaneously.

Make the ratio of food small and don’t fill it up all the way to the rim of the bowl. You can use a feeding ball that has a normal ratio of food that cats can eat only after some physical activity.

Never make your shorthair go hungry for days and leave them starving just so they can lose weight. It is morally and scientifically wrong as this will only make your shorthair feeble and unhealthier.


One of the reasons your shorthair gets fat is inactivity and lack of exercise. So, the weight loss process should start from here too.

You have to encourage your shorthair to do more exercise and involve in more physical activities. Buy them toys that make them stand on their feet while playing around.

Play throw and fetch with your British Shorthair as they will play that game alike dogs and if you train them well. Keep their basic items on the different sides of the house so that they walk around a lot.


If the reason for your shorthair to get obese is diagnosed to be some kind of disease, ask the vet for the medicines that will solve both problems, disease, and obesity.

Once the disease is out of the way, you can make your shorthair go through a weight loss process.

What Are The Best Cat Foods For Obese British Shorthair?

You need to find foods for your shorthair that can help it to lose weight without compromising its health and filling amount.

You can go for cat feeders that will help you give food to your greedy cat-like British Shorthair who will eat till there is food available.

Cat slow feeder like Catit Senses 2.0 Digger Interactive Cat Toy can help you solve the problem with overfeeding behavior and can make the cat eat the food slowly and in a small amount.

Best Overall Food For British Shorthair For Weight Loss

You can go for the best overall food like Blue Buffalo Weight Control Natural Adult Dry Cat Food that is quite affordable too.

It is filled with various proteins as well as calories that will fill the stomach of the cat while helping them lose the extra weight.

Raw Food For Overweight British Shorthair

There is also raw food option if you want to feed raw food to your British Shorthair. Instinct Raw Boost Healthy Weight Grain is a highly recommended raw food as it has added L-carnitine that helps to boost the metabolism of your shorthair without letting it gain any more weight.

Food For Older Overweight British Shorthairs

If your shorthair is old or spayed or neutered and needs foods that are specifically made for them, go for Royal Canin Appetite Control Spayed/Neutered 12+ Dry Adult Cat Food.

This food is formulated with vitamins and antioxidants to boost the immune system to stay healthy.

Food For Overweight British Shorthair With Gastrointestinal Disease

If your shorthair is suffering from gastrointestinal problems or weight gain is one of the symptoms of these diseases, then you can switch to a vegetarian option as well.

Evanger’s Super Premium Low Fat Vegetarian Dinner for Dogs & Cats is very easy to digest making itself ideal for cats with the sick tummy.

Fish-Flavored Food For British Shorthair For Weight Loss

Your British Shorthair loves to fish like any other cat, so, you might search for a food option that is fish-flavored but also helps the cat to lose weight.

Solid Gold – Fit as a Fiddle with Fresh Caught Alaskan Pollock is free of fillers like soy, corn, and wheat as well as is the best option among fish-flavored dry food.

Wet Food For British Shorthair With Obesity And Dehydration

But if you don’t want dry food for you British Shorthair due to dehydration issue, you can have options among wet foods.

One of the highly recommended wet foods that are filled with proteins as well as fibers is Avoderm Natural Indoor Weight Control Cat Food.

Food Enriched In Protein For Obese British Shorthair

Likewise, for food high in protein, you can go for Nulo Adult Trim Grain-Free Dry Cat Food that has a blend of vitamins and minerals. These are specifically made for indoor cats like British Shorthair with overweight issues.

What Are The Risk Factors For Obesity In British Shorthair?

There are several risk factors that have the potential to make your shorthair gain weight and result in obesity. It is often misjudged to be associated with the type of food rather than other factors.

Gender is one of the factors that serve as a potential risk factor for obesity in a cat. Male and neutered cats are more likely to gain weight than female or spayed cats.

Also, the reproductive status of British Shorthair contributes to weight gain and obesity. Female, when they are pregnant, tends to gain weight but it wouldn’t affect them unless it turns into obesity.

The feeding frequency also plays a role as a potential risk factor as the more frequently they eat, the more carbs they intake.

Frequently Asked Questions

Although the questions related to overweight and British Shorthair can be never-ending, here are answers to some FAQs you might be wondering about.

Why Is My Cat So Fat And Lazy?

Overfeeding, inactivity, etc. leads to obesity in the cat and an obese cat isn’t energetic and playful. They like to sit and sleep all day and even if they try jumping or climbing, the extra weight makes it harder for them.

This might be the reason why your shorthair is getting fat and lazy every day.

Do British Shorthairs Eat A Lot?

Yes, British Shorthairs are known for their love for food and not knowing when to stop. Their body doesn’t do well with carbs so they are prone to obesity and getting overweight.

These cats cat eat up to 10 to 15 times a day with no leftover henceforth. They are a foodie cat that will eat most of the meaty things you serve them without making a fuss.


In conclusion, overweight and obesity are never a good thing when it comes to British Shorthair although they are prone to them. You have to extra careful with the food you are giving to your shorthair. Improper diet and feeding frequency can bring issues related to health and shortens the lifespan of your British Shorthair. So, with the motto ‘Prevention is better than cure’ you have to make sure your shorthair doesn’t gain weight over 10% of its average weight. Even if they do get overweight, take measures to help them lose their unwanted and unhealthy weight. Simple precautions and proper care can go a long way for your furry friend and for you as well.