Written by Sandy Porter
Published: March 28, 2023
Image Credit © iStock.com/Dzurag


Defined as a body’s relative mass or the heaviness of an animal, object, or human being.


Weight is the heaviness of an object or living creature, or the force acting on the object or creature due to gravity or acceleration. Many objects in nature are not weighed, but commonly weighed objects and beings may include vehicles for road safety, persons for health monitoring purposes and sizing, animals for health monitoring, luggage carried in commercial transit, and food items for determination of price or value.

Average Weight of Common Household Animals

British Shorthair cat on scales at veterinary clinic.


Household animals are frequently weighed for the purposes of monitoring their health and maturation. Each animal, like humans, has been given “healthy” or average weight ranges to determine weight class. Weight classes may include severely underweight, underweight, average weight, overweight, or obese. Average healthy weights are determined by bone structure size, lean muscle versus fat, and overall size comparatively to the number of pounds. Diet, activity levels, and genetics impact weight in animals as they do in humans.

Average common household animal weights include:

  • Small dogs: Between 3 and 22 pounds
  • Medium dogs: Between 20 and 60 pounds
  • Large dogs: Between 60 and 250
  • Small cat breeds: Between 3 and 8 pounds
  • Standard cat breeds: Between 8 and 11 pounds
  • Large cat breeds: Between 12 and 20 pounds
  • Small rabbit breeds: Between 2 and 6 pounds
  • Medium rabbit breeds: Between 5 and 8 pounds
  • Large rabbit breeds: Between 10 to 18 pounds, up to 20 pounds
  • Hedgehogs: Between 1 and 2 pounds
  • Ferrets: Between 1.5 and 4.5 pounds
  • Parakeets: Between 1.1 and 4.6 ounces
  • Macaws: Between 12 ounces and 4 pounds
  • Iguanas: Between 2.6 and 8.8 pounds
  • Bearded dragons: Between 14 and 19.4 ounces

Weighing Methods

Balance scale on wooden desk, turquoise background
Scales of justice on the wooden table


Weight is most often measured via one of two methods.

  • Spring, pneumatic, or hydraulic scale: measuring local weight (i.e., the object or creature’s literal heaviness). These scales include bathroom scales, grocery market scales, or vehicle scales.
  • Balance scale: a measuring comparative weight between two objects, such as the type of scale that the symbolic “justice” holds, with two pans hanging on either end of levers.

Animals That Weight the Most

A Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) breaches out of the Atlantic Ocean. This endangered cetacean species migrates from the Northern Atlantic to the Caribbean each winter to breed or give birth.
Whales are the heaviest creatures on earth.

©Ethan Daniels/Shutterstock.com

The ten animals known to be the heaviest on earth include:

  • Whale
  • Plankton feeding shark
  • Elephant
  • Rhinoceros
  • Hippopotamus
  • Elephant Seal
  • Giraffe
  • Saltwater Crocodile
  • Bovini
  • Polar bear



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About the Author

Sandy lives in the Midwest with her husband, 3 cats, and patio and garden full of plants. She enjoys writing about plants, animals, travel, and the outdoors in general, applying her knowledge as a professional pet sitter and hobby gardener to her writing.