Mike Wilson and his girlfriend Megan Hanneman started their own company where they produce wall mounted furniture for indoor cats to promote activity in them so they don't just lay around and do nothing all day long.
They already had two cats that helped them test out their products, but one day when they only had 45 minutes to spare they decided to go to the Humane Society to adopt another cat. "When we walked in, we were instantly drawn to this gentle giant named Bronson. The receptionist told us that to go in and see him we would first need to sit down and be interviewed by a staff member."
Unfortunately that day the Humane Society was really busy and they didn't get to see Bronson in person. "After we left, neither of us could stop talking about him and how much fun it would be to bring him home and help him lose the extra pounds. We went back to the Humane Society the following day, shortly after they opened, and sat down with a staff member. She told us that all the Humane Society knew about Bronson’s past was that his last owner passed away."
Because Bronson was 33 pounds and very much overweight they think his previous caretaker fed him a lot of table scraps. But when Mike and Megan went in to meet him for the first time they couldn't stop smiling, "We went in to meet him and instantly fell in love. I remember my cheeks hurting from smiling for so long," Mike said.
Bronson was so adorable and affectionate when they petted him that they just couldn't wait to get him home. They also realized some other very unique qualities about him. "All of a sudden, we noticed that he was a polydactyl cat with extra fingers and had very pronounced thumbs! Even more adorable, his paws oddly resembled our home state of Michigan. He was the sweetest cat we had ever met and he seemed so happy to be home and have a big space of his own."
"After bringing Bronson home, we scheduled his first visit to the vet. While we were there, we found out that Bronson is also quite the ladies man. All the doctors and vet techs were taking turns coming into the room to admire his robust body, cute face, and mittens."
For heavy and overweight cats like Bronson, it is crucial for them to lose weight slowly otherwise they can get fatty liver disease which is extremely fatal.
Mike and Megan changed his diet three times since they adopted him, but they finally figured out the best diet for him. It consists of the dry food that the shelter had him on and some grain-free wet food.
"We’ve also changed his exercise routine a few times. At first, it was playing with toys with him laying down for about 20 minutes a day and also carrying him downstairs so that he needed to climb back up to get to his favorite napping spot."
After a few times of seeing him struggle to get up the stairs, they were scared that it may put too much strain on his body and his joints so they decided to wait until he is a little bit more fit.
"Currently, his exercise routine is made up of moving his food dish around the room to promote walking, I feel like we’ve lost points with him on that one, and still playing with toys while he’s laying down. His absolute favorite toy is a tomato filled with catnip, which he likes to attack, bite, and kick with his back feet."
They also started an Instagram page just for Bronson to showcase his amazing weight loss journey and in two weeks they already had over 13,000 followers.
And it just kept on growing! His followers also love cheering him on and giving him the best advice possible so he can be healthy.
There was, however, a bit of a problem when Mike of Megan had to carry him. "Carrying Bronson became an issue early on. He’s so large and he carries a lot of weight in his chest, so there’s no great way to pick him up without feeling like we’re hurting or squishing him. To combat this problem, we invented the “transportation pillow,” which is.. just a pillow. As simple of an idea as it is, carrying him with his pillow has been a great way to get him out to our living room without making him incredibly uncomfortable."
Have a look down below at some of Bronson's best pictures.
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