Our cat, Sassy, is overweight. In our ongoing attempts to be good caretakers and ward off the ASPCA, we have tried several weight reduction tools for him: diet foods of all type and variety, forced exercise, the remote control mouse and severe food rationing. The only thing that really had any effect was the introduction of a very active Border Collie /Husky mix that competes with Sassy for his food and loves to play tag. However, Sassy has developed a fondness for dog food and that is an even bigger problem.
It's not like you could take a cat to the park and let him get some exercise- believe me- cats hate collars and leashes. With Sassy, whenever we put the collar and leash on him, he falls over as if his legs cannot bear the weight. In his case, though, there might be some validity to that. Oh, I suppose I could have trained my cat to cooperate if I had started at an earlier age, but seriously, I did not think weight would be an issue for a cat. I fed him doctor recommended food at the recommend daily allowance and have even cut back from that. Fresh water is always available and I have a fairly decent sized apartment. My daughter suggested we put him on our treadmill. That lasted about 5 seconds. ( No animals were harmed in this sequence) And still Sassy's tummy touches the floor.
And then we found the laser pointer. That fat old cat that resists any other form of activity will chase the laser dot for 5 minutes at a time, a long time for a cat( I believe cats are ADHD). And then he will resume the chase five minutes later, like he had never seen the thing before. Five minutes five times a day is nearly the recommended 30 minutes activity per day recommended by the surgeon general ( should be good for cats too?) and has resulted in getting Sassy's tummy off the floor. Hallelujah
And the icing on the cake is that it is great fun to watch!