Mews and Nips: The Plight of Morbidly Obese Cats
Meow, the 39-pound cat who was relinquished to a Santa Fe shelter because his elderly owner could no longer care for him, has died of lung failure. The LA Times reported that the shelter placed Meow in a foster home and put him on a strict, high-protein diet intended to knock off some weight before he could be adopted by a new owner. When Meow began wheezing last Thursday, vets initially suspected asthma or allergies. Meow’s condition worsened, and even though four veterinarians tried to save him, he died last Saturday afternoon. Read the full story on the LA Times website.
Hopefully, Meow’s brief media fame will help raise awareness that feline obesity is a serious problem. Lorie Huston, DVM, a Rhode Island veterinarian and publisher of the Pet Health Care Gazette, put it perfectly in her post titled A Sad Farewell to Meow, Killed by Kindness and Obesity: “Though Meow’s plight is tragic, perhaps we can all learn a lesson from his situation. I know that Meow’s elderly owner probably never meant to do him any harm. In fact, it’s likely she thought she was doing right by him. But if a creature can be killed with kindness, Meow is one of the best examples.”
In happier news, another fat cat is doing well. Tiny Tim, a tabby who was rescued from the streets of Houston just before Christmas, is down to 32.2 pounds from his original weight of almost 36 pounds. The Houston Chronicle reports that Tiny Tim has been cared for at Southside Place Animal Hospital by clinic owner Dr. Alice Frei, staff members and various volunteers. Many people have called to inquire about adopting him but most wanted assurance he wouldn’t develop serious medical problems. “I can’t assure that,” Frei said. “He’s likely to develop diabetes or heart problems. Losing weight doesn’t alter the fact that he spent five years way overweight.” Tiny has done so well in his new environment that he will probably be kept on as the official clinic cat. Read the full story on the Houston Chronicle website.
Fios was named by Verizon workers after they rescued the malnourished cat in Queens, NY. “We were walking on the sidewalk and we heard a meowing,” said Vinny Cassidy, a Verizon field technician. “I thought it was under a car, but it was up in a tree.” The cat was grasping onto a tree branch with one leg, with what appeared to be a cable cord tied around its neck. Vinny’s coworker Robert Munday used the bucket on their truck to reach the choking cat, and then snipped off the cable with a pair of shears. According to the New York Daily News, Fios has been adopted and will be moving to the Long Island suburbs. Read the full story on Verizon’s blog.
Today’s video shows three bobcat kittens who were rescued and “adopted” by a domestic feline mom. Prepare for some major “awww” moments!
Have a great weekend!
Photo sources: photo of Meow from Santa Fe Humane Society Facebook page, photo of Tiny Tim from the Houston Chronicle website, photo of Fios from Verizon website