- Posted January 31, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
They were pretty... large when I picked them up from their previous owner. They were only two years old at the time and Moose weighed in at over 25 pounds and Dre was following behind at 19 pounds. It was my intention to get one large cat, not necessarily fat just a bigger than average house cat. I came across Moose and Dre online and they were only 2 years old at the time. Once I saw the picture I had to have these two cats. You could just tell they were going to be fun, and they are.
When I met the previous owners to pick up the cats I asked why they were so big and I was told that the owners, even previous to the couple I was getting them from, were regularly out of town and would leave almost entire bags of cat food on the floor to feed the animals while they were gone. It was because of this irregular feeding schedule that they become the larger than life animals they are today.
Initially, we didn't worry about the weight. They were young and didn't seem to have any problems moving around or being active. Moose, even to this day, can still easily clear an obstacle 3-4 foot high, NO SWEAT! Kind of funny too. Dre is the same way, uninhibited by his weight and able to keep up with the other, slimmer cat we have that only weighs 9 pounds who is the same age. We even took them to the vet when we got them to get them the rest of their shots and make sure they were healthy. I guess I never thought about the looks I would get when I walked in with Moose in my hands (couldn't find a carrier big enough to bring him in). It was like I was being visually scolded for animal abuse, and I wasn't even the cause. At that point, I got a little nervous. I even thought they might not letting me take them back home (don't ask me why, I was first time pet owner). The vet, while concerned about their overall appearance, said that "Moose and Dre are in great health and in no immediate of anything as long as they stay active (which they did... all day and all night).
So, after a couple of years, and follow up appointments, Moose and Dre continued to be active and didn't gain anymore weight. Moose developed a UTI so we had to feed him different food that would help take care of that and we also decided to put them on a diet regiment since we had to change food anyway. We figured it was time. Well, that didn't go well and as much as we tried for months and months and months, Moose and Dre never lost weight. We tried exactly what the vets and cat experts had told us to do and these cats were just not getting any smaller. At one point we thought Dre was gaining weight! Keep in mind, both of these cats are big as it is and would easily be longer and taller than most house cats. Moose's head is very close to the size of a softball, and Dre's isn't much smaller. Their paws, completely spread out are about the size of my palm (I'm a 24 year old, 5'11 guy).
My boys are big part of my life and even though I know it would probably be better for them if they weren't so overweight, part of me thinks that it would be to hard to change things now and they always seem to react negatively to anything we do. Dre usually gets sick and throws up his food or quits being so active if we try and give them diet food. Even after 2 months, it still doesn't set right with him.
I guess all in all, I know a healthier cat would typically be a happier cat but what's more important? Their weight or happiness. They will probably be like this forever and I'm alright with that as long as it doesn't cause any problems and my vet says they're alright. As long as they're happy and in no danger, I guess we'll keep them this way. I'm not going to force them to be sick and unhappy just because they're fat.