Blackpool cat sanctuary team hit the treadmill to aid podgy puss

Mala the fat cat had to go back to puss-in-boot camp after getting a bit too much love from her previous owners.

The podgy pet was brought in to the Cats Paws sanctuary in School Road, Marton, after her owner moved and could not take her along.

Mala gets her sweatband and running shoes on to help Cats Paws staff get in training for their "Man-imal Marathon" to raise funds for a cat's exercise centre at their sanctuary

Mala gets her sweatband and running shoes on to help Cats Paws staff get in training for their "Man-imal Marathon" to raise funds for a cat's exercise centre at their sanctuary

Mala was born at the sanctuary four years before, but when she returned she was at 6.85kg – twice the weight she should have been.

Overweight cats can suffer from health problems such as bladder stones or arthritis, so manager at Cats Paws, behind Pensilva, Samantha Ascroft put her on a fitness regime including time on the treadmill and even swimming!

Now Mala is repaying them by acting as a fitness model to help them to raise money for an exercise room at Cats Paws to help other fat felines.

Staff and volunteers will be running a “man-imal marathon” at the centre on October 14 from 10am to 4pm on treadmills to raise funds to build the exercise and relaxation room for the cats.

Mala with Cats Paws Sanctuary manager Samantha Ascroft

Mala with Cats Paws Sanctuary manager Samantha Ascroft

The event is open to the public and cakes and refreshments will be on sale on the day. Donations and sponsorship can be made via catspaws@tiscali.co.uk

Samantha said: “She was huge but you could tell by her delicate head and tail that she should have been small.

“Her weight was affecting her health, she had trouble with bladder stones. She went to hydrotherapy in a pool with an under water treadmill and on our own treadmill. She loves it, a lot of people don’t realise cats are natural swimmers.

“Now she is blooming, her health is better and she lost loads of weight. We have so many overweight cats coming in it is a problem.

Mala, who came to Cats Paws twice the weight she should have been, looks less than impressed with the our idea of health food to aid her slimming

Mala, who came to Cats Paws twice the weight she should have been, looks less than impressed with the our idea of health food to aid her slimming

“We need an area to encourage older cats to exercise with agility ramps and steps and somewhere our more energetic ones can let off steam as well as a an area where they can relax quietly.”