Fat Cat's Owner Found; Lost Home to Foreclosure

The owner of a fat cat found wandering the streets of south New Jersey has hit lean times.

A senior citizen contacted the Camden County Animal Shelter to claim ownership of a 44-pound cat found in Voorhees, N.J., nicknamed "Prince Chunk." But the woman can't afford to take the heavy feline back after losing her home to foreclosure.

"It broke my heart to give him up," Donna Oklatner told MyFOXPhilly.com. "I could not take care of him. I love him. It broke me heart. I wanted him to have a good home."

The cat, whose real name is "Powder," gained national attention this week after reports that he was found abandoned. But Oklatner told MyFOXPhilly.com that she had given Powder to friends who said they'd take him to a shelter.

"Nobody would take him," the 68-year-old woman told the station. "And then one of the neighbors — I'm not going to say where, but a friend of mine — said 'Listen, we know you can't afford to have Powder.' And it's not because he ate too much.

"It was because of the foreclosure and my not having a home, a place to go," she continued. "So they said they would take him and put him in a shelter."

Shelter officials told MyFOXPhilly.com that they had received Prince Chunk after Animal Control found him outdoors without a collar in Voorhees.

The Prince's gender has been in question since the cat was found last week. Officials initially thought the cat was a boy, and named him Captain Chunk, but then decided he was a she, opting for the Princess moniker. But on Thursday, a veterinarian said the cat was indeed male, with the name Prince Chunk seeming to stick.

"Obviously she did take very good care of this cat, and she very much loved this cat," Debbie Wright, who is fostering the cat, told FOX News on Thursday.

She said Prince Chunk is "sweet. He purrs, loves his belly being rubbed."

Shelter officials had to use a dog scale to weigh the cat, who is only a couple of pounds lighter than the heaviest cat on record, a 46-pound, 15-ounce tabby in Australia that died in the 1980s.

Wright told FOX News that now that Prince Chunk will be going up for adoption, he'll be taken in for tests to see if he has a thyroid problem.

Jennifer Anderch, the executive director of the shelter, told the Philadelphia Inquirer that Prince Chunk's owner found a home for the cat's brother, a big cat she said was "not nearly as chunky as Chunky."

The shelter has at least 20 formal applications to adopt the portly Prince, Anderch said.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.