In recent weeks, a very fat cat called Meow appeared on the national television shows "Today" and was cuddled by the Anderson Cooper on his talk show. Meow received international attention for tipping the scales at 39 pounds - about 17 kilograms.
According to the Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society's Facebook page , Meow died due to respiratory complications.
Dubbed the nation's fattest cat, Meow tipped the scales at 39 pounds. Turned into the Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society when his elderly owner could no longer care for him, Meow's obesity was probably a case of too much food and too little exercise. Indeed, his weight combined with arthritis, made it a challenge for the over-weight kitty to take more than a few steps at a time.
The shelter has placed Meow in a foster home where he was on a diet and he had already lost 2 pounds. His progress was updated on the shelter's facebook page, with hundreds of friends across the country following his progress. However, he began to develop respiratory issues.
Initially, Meow's wheezing was attributed to possible allergies or the fact that he was moving around more in his foster home since many obese people and animals wheeze when they walk.
When his respiratory symptoms, veterinary specialists were consulted however treatment was unsuccessful.
A statement was released from the Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society:
Meow - reputed to be the nation's most overweight cat - has lost his battle with obesity. The orange-and-white tabby died unexpectedly over the weekend after he developed respiratory complications.
It appears that his extreme obesity may have set off a string of events that ultimately ended his life.
While everyone at the shelter is saddened by his death, Director Martin hopes his struggle will not be in vain. "We mourn Meow's death, but we also hope his fight will encourage other people to help their pets maintain the best health possible," she said. "Obesity is not something to be ignored."