Bill the Fat Cat

was found as an orphan kitten in August 2000, and if he is fat, that’s preferable to the terrible thinness of my dear friend’s just-deceased cat of the same age, who was so bony that it was frightening.

Anisha is stupid; the cat is clearly ancient like his owner, and trying to alter his diet at this point is unlikely to make him svelte; he will still be a cat with belly-swags whatever she tries to make Peggy do about it.


No reason why there should not be a gentle attempt to slim Bill down a bit. 17 is ancient for some cats, others may have a few more years to go.

Peggy is stupid.

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No, Anisha is stupid. Lecturing a woman old enough to be your great-grandmother is rarely the way to force her to do what you have decided is what she ought to do. Anisha is a bullying little git.


I don’t see that there was bullying involved. We only have Peggy’s account, after all. She didn’t seem to think she’s been bullied but was just in a snit at having been challenged. I have no doubt that Anisha - a young flibbertigibbet and brown to boot - wasn’t deferential enough for Peggy’s taste. And does the age of the owner actually matter compared with the well-being of the animal, aged or not?

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There seems little evidence that being fat makes cats unwell. The fat cats I have known have been disgustingly contented about it, and lived to ripe old ages. Anisha is an interfering nit.

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Oh, Peggy was in a snit all right but with some cause, in spite of Anisha being right that Bill is fat, about which Peggy is clearly in denial. I did enjoy Jill’s attempts at tact: ‘a fine figure of a cat.’

If Anisha really did practically snatch the treat from Peggy’s hand, I’d call that rude and counter-productive. The cat isn’t fat because he gets a little treat now and then. He’s fat because he’s overfed his regular food and is probably not getting the exercise he did when he was a youngster. Poor beastie, it’s not easy when they keep asking for food. I’d better keep an eye on Miss Heidi’s waistline because she is quite keen on her grub and hardly sylph-like at approximately four and a half years old.

Do the storywriters realise how old Bill is? I think that does rather make a difference. As you say, Gus, a gentle attempt at slimming him down a bit, but no need for Anisha to get stroppy with Peggy.

I wish we’d heard Anisha’s side! Perhaps we will. I like these sorts of stories, bodes well for the new editor.


I wonder if the Anisha mk.1 actress has left and they’re searching for another.

It seems strange to join the cast and then just weeks later, to drift off somewhere.

If it’s prior work arrangements, then why not introduce her to TA after those had completed.

The Scottish wild cat is considerably larger than domestic cats. Who is to say that the larger cat isn’t the right size for all uk cat’s.


We have no evidence that Peggy is in denial. I have known plenty of fanatical people who think that anything which does not comply with their standards is Wrong and needs to be corrected by force if necessary. Anisha is exactly the sort of know-it-all who would castigate someone for overfeeding her cat and not bother to run a thyroid check to see whether over-feeding was in fact the answer to the cat’s great girth.

Come to that, since nobody has ever given any sign that they thought Bill fat, Anisha might easily be one of those who think that anything over minimum standard weight means the owner needs to be told off.

We lack evidence that she is actually right.

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It was pretty clear to me from Jill’s comments and suppressed laughter that she thought Bill was fat. Also, I don’t think Anisha would have said ‘obese’ without meaning it.

As for Bill never having been fat before, well, if he wasn’t then, he is now. If houses can acquire and lose bedrooms, poor old Bill can acquire a few kilos.

Anyway, I thoroughly enjoyed the scene. It sounded as though both Anisha and Peggy had acted perfectly in character. Fancy calling her ‘that Anisha girl’ or words to that effect! Oh, and I thought Jill acted it perfectly, too.

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“Ah, I see what’s happened. The spare room above the pub has become attached to this cat. We can try to separate it, but it’s a risky procedure.”


Just so, Hedgers. If I’m not careful, our spare room will become attached to our cat!

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That’s an awfully long-winded way of saying ‘vet’…

And - as Janie has already said - Jill’s responses did make it fairly plain that Bill is on the rotund side.

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There is still no need for Anisha to be both know-it-all and at the same time uncaring, is there? After all, elderly cats do not get fat only because they are over-fed. There are conditions (lucrative for a vet’s practice) which can cause this, and it seems Anisha didn’t check about those, just insulted Peggy gratuitously.

Since she has to take a taxi to get to the vet’s anyhow, next time she wants Bill’s claws trimmed Peggy may well go to that nice practice in Hollerton Junction, or the one in Edgeley, instead of to the Stables.

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Bill has his claws clipped. Is it reasonable to assume that this is something that was happening not for the first time but is part of a regular pattern - maybe three times a year. He would be seen once a year by the practice anyway for his inoculations. And at each of those visits he would - if the practice is like any of those with which I have dealt over the years - be weighed. So sudden weight gain would be noticed and no doubt investigated. Is it not a more likely scenario that his notes show gradually increasing weight and something to the effect of ‘owner told to cut down the food a bit’ over quite a period? I just don’t see that Anisha was ‘uncaring’. She riled Peggy, but that’s not the same thing at all, in my book.
Of course there are conditions that cause weight gain, but the captain among these men of death is overfeeding and the notes would be likely to indicate that as the culprit.

It seems that Anisha did none of the right things; she put Peggy’s back up, did no good for the cat (though I assume she made a competent job of clipping his claws, something no cat of my family’s has ever had done because if they clawed the furniture things were Rustled At Them and they desisted), and showed herself as usual to be lousy at dealing with people.

She can be as good a vet as she likes, but you lose customers when you offend them. I thought she wanted to build the practice up, not lose it customers.

I’ve had cats all my life and never had their claws clipped. Are they getting him mixed up with a dog? :confused:

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I believe it is a fashion from America, where they go to the lengths of having the claws removed altogether so that their cats won’t damage the furniture.

How cruel :rage:


That is my thought. I knew someone who wanted to have it done to the six cats she was keeping in an eighth floor flat in London, because they were tearing the place apart, but luckily before she had saved up enough to have it done to all of them (and even she felt it would be a bad idea to de-claw them one at a time because the de-clawed ones might be at a disadvantage) she and her husband moved to a house at the edge of a small town, where five of the cats moved out and lived in the garden, coming in only to eat, and the sixth went mad and apparently suffered terrible agoraphobia, and was the most miserable animal I have ever felt sorry for. But still clawed, which you knew about three minutes after entering the house, because they were used on all visitors extensively.

At least Peggy has never been that nasty to her cats. And Sammy lived to an even riper old age than Bill seems to be doing, even under her wicked regimen of over-feeding.

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I don’t think it’s legal any more. OK, a quick check suggests it’s not illegal but that a lot of vets are refusing to do it, quite rightly. I imagine this (though not the USA) is typical:
“The Ottawa Humane Society is opposed to the declawing of cats.”

Our cat picks on a particular chair and does it while we’re not around. Clever girl! For once, I caught her at it and, as Fanta says, rustled something (a Goretex jacket, nice and rustly) at her and she scooted off. Lesson learned: don’t do it when the humans are around (see kitchen counters).