Losing weight is a classic New Year’s resolution, but, according to psychologists, only a tiny sliver of us ever manage to achieve this evergreen goal.
That’s why one animal shelter is introducing an extremely fat cat seeking an adoptive family willing to help him achieve a healthier weight. Because diet and exercise is always easier with a workout buddy in tow.
“This absolute unit of a cat is Zack,” the Michigan Humane Society wrote on Twitter. “He’s available to adopt at our Howell shelter but needs a parent who will help him slim down. He’s currently over 30 pounds and our medical staff is trying to get him to a healthier weight.”
The 12-year-old cat currently tips the scales at 30.63 pounds, which is extremely obese for a cat. But of course, Zack is far from America’s only flabby feline. According to one 2019 study that considered 19 million American and Canadian housecats, the felines were generally heavier than they were 25 years before.
“A few years ago if you talked about fat cats people would laugh it off, but I think everyone is taking obesity more seriously now,” a veterinary professor, Theresa Bernardo, told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
Just like their humans, who have also grown tubbier over the years, the collective weight gain is generally attributed to cats increasingly sedentary indoor lifestyle, which often includes too much food and too little exercise.
“Our cats by 8 years of age had gained on average over a half a kilo, or a pound, which is 20% of their body weight,” Bernardo continued. “And we know that obesity is related to a lot of diseases — diabetes, some obesity-related cancers and arthritis.”
Fortunately, Twitter was fully supportive of Zack’s weight loss goals, and even encouraged the tabby with stories of other fat cats who embraced similar weight loss journeys. “I think he needs tips from @Cinderblockcat,” another user wrote, referring the overweight cat who went viral after angrily meowing through her new workout routine.
This absolute unit of a cat is Zack. He's available to adopt at our Howell shelter but needs a parent who will help him slim down. He's currently over 30 pounds and our medical staff is trying to get him to a healthier weight. https://t.co/1khSupBtsV #chonkcat #cats pic.twitter.com/Rcl99Ni5lD
— Michigan Humane Society (@mhumane) December 31, 2019
“We’d love to see Zack’s fitness journey,” the Troy police department wrote. “This could be an inspiration for all of us. “Zack, it’s a slow process for a kitty, but I’m sure you will be able to get that extra weight off,” another user agreed. “I think you’d look good in a Troy PD Feline Unit vest! Good luck on your journey. It won’t be long before you find a great furever home.”
Good luck with your weight loss goals, Zack! We hope you find your new exercise partner soon!
J. Swanson is a writer, traveler, and animal-enthusiast based in Seattle, an appropriately pet-crazed city where dog or cat ownership even outweighs the number of kids. When the weather permits, she likes to get outside and explore the rest of the Pacific Northwest, always with a coffee in hand.
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