Local TV in Porland, Oregon, paid a visit to Hercules at home, and found both the generously proportioned cat and his human friend Geoff Ernest doing well. Lots of pictures, like the one to the right. Not surprisingly, they have been approached for promotions, such as Purina's diet cat food…
Let's consider the other side of this heartwarming story: that of a nice cat, who because he was not neutered and was let outdoors, acted with predictable behaviors of fighting, mating and becoming a stray.
The heartache of Hercules' ailing person thinking “he was dead” would have been prevented had Hercules been taken care of as a beloved pet by being neutered and preferably kept indoors. How many unwanted kittens were produced because of this one stray tomcat's life on the streets?
Although Hercules' story had a happy ending, it easily could have ended much worse. I can't imagine what it be like to come home and find Luna potentially “lost forever.” That's why she enjoys her warm spring afternoons safely indoors…
All I can say is, “man, that it one fat cat!” He has actually made quite a name for himself since getting stuck in a dog door while scavenging for food. The owners of the garage (and the food) were hoping to catch the culprit but did not necessarily expect the 20 lb “Goliath,” as he became known at the Oregon Humane Society, where he was taken after being freed from his little predicament.
You can watch a video of “Goliath”, whose actual name is Hercules, below.
Happily, Hercules was reunited with his family – you can see a nice picture of him and his human by following the link. One sad note to the story, however, is that Hercules was diagnosed as having FIV (feline immunodeficiency, similar to HIV for humans). But that should not stop him from returning home to lead a happy and contented (very contented, it seems) life.
Cute as such a fat cat might be, pet obesity is increasing in the U.S., similar to the obesity epidemic among humans, and can carry many of the equivalent health risks. Fortunately, Luna and I have both managed to avoid this trend so far – we are both naturally quite thin. Here are some resources for those who are interested or concerned with issues of obesity in their feline friends: