Meow in April 2012, one month before his death.
|Died||May 5, 2012 (aged 1–2)|
Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States
|Years active||2011 – 2012|
|Known for||Heaviest cat|
|Cause of death||Lung failure|
Meow (c. 2010 – May 5, 2012), also known as Meow the obese cat, was a male domestic cat who attracted international attention when an animal shelter publicized efforts to slim him down, in an attempt to have him adopted. However, Meow died of lung failure two weeks after entering the animal shelter, on May 5, 2012. He was the world's heaviest cat at his time of death, weighing 39.6 pounds (18.0 kilograms).
Domestic cats are similar in size to the other members of the genus Felis, typically weighing between 4 kilograms (8.8 lb) and 5 kilograms (11 lb). However, Meow weighed 18.0 kilograms (39.7 lb), making him the heaviest cat in the world at the time, although not the heaviest on record. Himmy, a cat from Australia, weighed 21.3 kilograms (46.8 pounds) at his death during his tenth year, in 1986. Guinness World Records has since stopped recording the world's heaviest pets in order to discourage deliberate overfeeding.
Meow, being the world's heaviest cat at the time, occasionally appeared on television shows in the United States. In 2010 he was featured on an episode of Anderson Live, which was hosted by American television personality Anderson Cooper. Meow was again featured on Anderson Live on April 30, 2012, with Cooper carrying the fat cat.
Weight loss and death
Meow was moved to the Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society two weeks before he died because his 87-year-old owner could no longer take care of him. The animal shelter gave Meow a strict high-protein diet intended to make the cat lose weight. The shelter also planned to publicize Meow and the diet plans for him to lose weight on their Facebook page. Meow's publicity was expected to arouse interest in having the cat adopted. The weight-loss plan began showing results with Meow losing two pounds (0.9 kilograms) during his stay in the animal shelter. The shelter planned to make Meow lose weight, at least ten pounds (4.5 kilograms), so that he would be able to be adopted. However, Meow began to have breathing problems by May 2, 2012. After undergoing a battery of tests, which included X-ray and cardiac ultrasound, he was put on oxygen therapy. On May 4, Meow was brought to a veterinary hospital to undergo emergency treatment. Four veterinarians attempted to save Meow's life, but he died during the afternoon of May 5.
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