ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Meow can't help but waddle. He's one super-sized cat.
The 2-year-old orange and white tabby tips the scale at nearly 40 pounds, and the Santa Fe Animal Shelter is on a mission to get the feline back into shape.
Meow's 87-year-old owner could no longer take care of him, so the pet was turned over to a shelter in southeastern New Mexico that called the Santa Fe shelter for help.
"The thing with this cat is when you look at it, certainly it's obese. You see that. But it's a sweet looking cat. His face is very sweet. It's just incredibly fat," shelter spokesman Ben Swan said Friday.
Meow has been placed with a foster family. He'll be on a special diet so he can start shedding some pounds. The goal is for him to lose at least 10 pounds so he can be put up for adoption.
The shelter plans to post updates on Meow's weight loss on its Facebook page.
It's not clear how the feline was able to gain so much weight in just two years. Adult cats typically weigh between seven and 12 pounds.
In Meow's case, the shelter is awaiting blood test results to make sure he doesn't have any additional health problems.
Shelter veterinarian Jennifer Steketee said the idea is for Meow to gradually lose weight by eating a special diet. He has already lost a couple of pounds since being turned in.
Steketee said the dangers of feline obesity are not much different than they are for humans — extra pressure on the heart and joints.