Does This Collar Make My Butt Look Big?: A Diet Book for Cats

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This diet-guide parody shows "extra furry" cats how to get svelte with kitty-specific versions of popular weight-loss and fitness regimes like the Zone, South Beach, Mayo Clinic, and French Women Don't Get Fat (But Their Cats Do).

Americans own more than 86 million cats, and the wild popularity of cat videos--from YouTube to the Internet Cat Video Film Festival--proves that cat-lovers can't get enough kitty humor. This book pokes fun at tubby tabbies--the world's cutest (and ...

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Does This Collar Make My Butt Look Big?: A Diet Book for Cats

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This diet-guide parody shows "extra furry" cats how to get svelte with kitty-specific versions of popular weight-loss and fitness regimes like the Zone, South Beach, Mayo Clinic, and French Women Don't Get Fat (But Their Cats Do).

Americans own more than 86 million cats, and the wild popularity of cat videos--from YouTube to the Internet Cat Video Film Festival--proves that cat-lovers can't get enough kitty humor. This book pokes fun at tubby tabbies--the world's cutest (and surliest) fat creatures--with laugh-out-loud details that will tickle the funnybone of anyone "owned" by a cat. Lampooning trendy weight-loss regimes and health gurus, this book will also make people feel better about their own battle of the bulge in comparison to cats' insatiable appetites and lazy lifestyles. By eating right for their blood type, sourcing raw and living foods, joining Weight Stalkers, avoiding toxic treats, and exercising while lying down, felines of every shape (round) and size (round) will soon be motivated to ditch the fifth serving of Beef Morsels in Gravy for fresh, local options like that vole in the backyard.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this hilarious diet-book parody, Harris (For the Love of Cats), a former humor columnist for Cats & Kittens magazine, adapts human diets for “extra fluffy” cats. After “diagnosing” feline personality types—from comatose to psycho—the author suggests an appropriate diet plan, such as the Paleo diet (“Stick to lean meats. This means no more feeding gourmet cheeses to the mouse in an attempt to plump him up before you eat him”) and “Catty Craig” (“Catty Craig is NOT right for you if you prefer to catch, kill, and devour your own food”). Exercise tips, such as “challenge the dog to a wrestling match under your person’s bed,” allow kitties to boost their fat-burning potential. Bonus features include a feline advice columnist named Flabby Tabby, “success stories” from animals such as Madame Puss and Princess Whiskers, and a guide for humans who want to put their pets on a diet (after they weigh themselves, of course.). This tongue-in-cheek offering will deliver laughs to pet owners and non–pet owners alike. Full-color illus. Agent: Winifred Golden, Castiglia Literary Agency. (Sept.)
From the Publisher
"This diet guide shows 'extra furry' cats how to lose weight and get fit—fast! Perfect for felines of every shape (round) and size (round), this miraculous diet manual reveals the secrets to sourcing raw and living foods, avoiding toxic treats, choosing between Paleo and Weight Stalkers, exercising while lying down, and more. Two paws up!"
—Jillian Meowchaels, author of Master Your Metapurrlism
"This book shows tubby tabbies how to win the battle of the bulge. With exercises you can (almost) do in your sleep, it’s never been easier to . . . zzzzzzzzzzzzzz . . . Huh? Wha . . . ? Is it time to eat?"
—Dr. Mewmet Paws, host of The Dr. Paws Show
"French women don’t get fat . . . but their cats do! This guide motivates fleshy felines to ditch that fifth serving of Beef Morsels in Gravy for sensibly sized portions of fresh, local options—like that vole in the backyard."
—Le Chat Pépin, author of The Art of Cooking Voles
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781607744894
  • Publisher: Clarkson Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony
  • Publication date: 9/17/2013
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 1,474,431
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 7.10 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

DENA HARRIS lives in Greensboro, North Carolina, with her husband and two cats—to whom she is allergic (the cats, not the husband). She is the author of Lessons in Stalking, For the Love of Cats, and Who Moved My Mouse? A Self-Help Book for Cats (Who Don’t Need Any Help), which has been translated into six languages. She’s held editorial positions at numerous magazines and teaches writing workshops around the nation. Every cat Dena has owned has been full-figured, but they still look fabulous in their collars. They have yet to forgive her for testing the strategies in this book on them. Visit
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Read an Excerpt


Does This Collar Make My Butt Look Big? is the book for any cat hoping to transform into a lean, mean, sleeping machine. While other diet and exercise books encourage a healthy lifestyle based on portion control and exercise, this book promotes the more feline-friendly approach of “returning your calories to the earth” (also known as “blowing chunks”).

This book is also a wake-up call for cats who just need to be, you know . . . awake. (Seriously, some of what we’re saying here is important. Get up.)

Want to be as strong as a professional mouser? Ready to admit that hot and sexy belly that’s been dragging on the floor the last few years maybe isn’t so hot and sexy? On the following pages you’ll find a stash of easy-to-use purractical tips such as:

•           Eat whatever you want. Just do what cats have done for centuries and disgorge a small mound of bones, fur, and grass someplace your humans will be sure to step in it.
•           Work in light cardio. Twice daily, increase your heart rate by running in frenzied circles around the house as if you’re being chased by a cat burglar or a veterinarian with a thermometer.
•           Seek out fresh, local food. Protein still in its final death throes is always healthiest . . . like that vole in the backyard.
If you’re ready for these secrets and more, keep reading. In less time than it takes to groom your backside, you too can be fit, feline, and fabulous!

Taking Stock: Where Are You Now?

Let’s be honest. If you’re reading this book, chances are you’re sporting a little “junk in the kitty trunk.” But are you actually “overweight”? Find out by rating your body using these definitions:

•           Plump. The ground shakes when you approach. Not because people fear you, but just because . . . you’re approaching.
•           Stocky. It takes two or three leaps and a complicated system of grappling hooks for you to summit the bed.
•           Obese. If we could tie a string to you and make you float, you’d fit right into the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade.
•           Big boned. Dinosaurs were big boned. Sasquatch is big boned. Pull up your kitty Piddle Pants1 and face the truth: you’re fat.
Before Before There Was Diet Kibble . . . A History of Fat Cats

It should come as no surprise that our feline ancestors, such as the European wild cat and African wild cat, didn’t struggle with their weight. With no easy access to Trader Joe’s Turkey & Giblets in Gravy—the nearest outlet was miles away—these cats were forced onto the plains and into caves to hunt and forage for food. Research reveals that the European cave lion, in an early adaptation of today’s popular Paleo diet (see page 54), occasionally noshed on bear cubs. (This was before the petit fours rage swept the plains, ushering in an era of catnip-tart and mini-vole desserts.)

These days, pampered cats are more likely to snort a bowl of Friskies Party Mix than to take down a grizzly. (Although . . . snorting Friskies has made more then one cat hallucinate they were taking down a grizzly, only to wake up the next morning in a compromising position with the dog’s Kong Teddy Bear toy. About that, perhaps the less said, the better.) In fact, more than 50 percent of felines are overweight—which of course means that 50 percent of felines are normal or underweight. How you see it depends on whether you’re a “the bowl is half empty” or “the bowl is half full” kind of cat. Since you’re reading a diet book, you’re probably a “the bowl is always empty” kind of cat—which reminds us: FEED ME.

How does this affect you? You’ve got your blankie, your sunbeam, and unlimited access to the naughty cable channels while your humans are at work. Why should you care about being overweight? Because issues linked to obesity include diabetes, stroke, heart attack, and the mortification that comes with having to be weighed on the livestock scale behind the veterinarian’s office.

So where to begin? The first step (calm down—you don’t actually have to stand up and go anywhere) is to test your knowledge. Take the quiz starting on page 6 to help you determine how much you know about shedding (no, not that kind of shedding—if only it were that easy) those unwanted pounds. Then grab a meal replacement bar,2 turn the page, and let your weight-loss odyssey begin.

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Table of Contents


Taking Stock: Where Are You Now?  
Climbing the Feline Food Pyramid  

The Comatose Cat  
You: On a Diet: A Cat’s Manual for Waist Waste Management  
The South Beach Diet  
For the Comatose Cat: Exercises You Can (Almost) Do in Your Sleep  

The OCD Cat  
Eat Right for Your Blood Type  
French Women Don’t Get Fat . . . But Their Cats Do  
Wash Your Paws Twenty Times Before You Exercise:
The OCD Cat Workout  

The ADD Cat  
The Paleo Diet  
The Zone Diet  
The Raw Food Diet and the Living Food Movement  
Exercise for the—Hey Look! There’s a Bird! And a Squirrel!
And Another Bird!—ADD Cat  

The Chronic Dieter Cat  
Master Your MetaPurrlism  
Catty Craig Versus Weight Stalkers  
The 557th Try Is the Charm:
An Exercise Plan for the Chronic Dieter Cat  

Psycho Kitty  
The Mayo Clinic Diet  
Touch My Sweatband and Die: Psycho Kitty Workouts  

Bonus Section  
For Cat Owners: Putting Your Cat on a Diet in Twenty-One Easy Steps   

Top Ten Tips for Continued Weight-Loss Success  
Ask Flabby Tabby  

About the Author   

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