A very fat cat has a new home thanks to an outpouring of support and some viral photos on Facebook.
Kiah Berkeley waited hours Friday morning to be the first in line to adopt a 35-pound orange tabby named Symba.
She wasn’t alone in falling for Symba and his unprecedented size. Ceci Ochoa with the Humane Rescue Alliance said the organization’s phone lines and email were flooded with offers to adopt Symba, who she said is the largest cat she’d ever seen come through their doors.
“It was amazing to see all these people step forward and willing to give him the best attention and most appropriate home to better himself,” Ochoa said.
Symba is 15 pounds heavier than his goal weight and the staff at the shelter was working to slim him down. He exercised on a cat wheel and was fed out of food puzzles that are designed to slow down a cat’s eating.
Shelter staff said Symba was not able to take more than a few steps without losing his breath.
Symba left with his new family Friday afternoon after getting some advice about how to help the cat with his new diet regimen.
Berkeley said she’s always been captivated by overweight animals.
“My husband asked me just this morning, 'Why do you want an obese cat?' I can’t explain it. I just love him, he’s adorable,” Berkeley said.
Symba's previous owners had to give him up when they moved into a nursing home.
Contributing: The Associated Press