Many of us dread our daily exercise routines or just avoid exercise altogether, but few people despise moving their bodies quite as much as Smudge the cat does. And yet, she has still managed to become a popular fitness influencer in many online communities as she works toward her weight-loss goals.
The 18-year-old feline was adopted a few years ago by a couple named Kaia and Matt. At the time, she weighed a whopping 23 pounds. Although breed standards vary, the typical cat weighs about 10 pounds, so she was well above a healthy number for her frame and desperately needed to lose weight to have a better life.
Smudge’s vet recommended a weight loss regimen that involved integrating some playtime into her daily routine, and Kaia and Matt were on board with the plan, but Smudge was miffed that no one asked her opinion on the matter.
When Kaia and Matt tried to take her outside for supervised playtime in the yard, she would immediately walk back to the door of the house and lie there until someone let her back inside. She absolutely refused to play or exercise in any way, so her new owners had to get a little bit creative.
Because Smudge was so motivated to return to her happy place, Kaia and Matt began carrying her farther and farther away from the house so that she’d be forced to walk a greater distance to get back home. And it worked! Now Smudge begrudgingly takes walks every single day, with one simple rule – no matter where she starts, she will only walk in the direction of her house.
@smudgeandfriends who thinks smudge is a pretty girl? #prettygirlswalklikethis #smudgeandfriends #catsoftiktok #catswalking #cattok ♬ Pretty Girls Walk – Big Boss Vette
Of course, not every day is a good walking day. Smudge is elderly and overweight, making hot weather dangerous for her health. So on hot summer days, she takes her walks in the dark by the light of a flashlight.
Rainy days can also be problematic. Smudge will completely refuse to walk when it’s raining on her, so either Kaia or Matt will walk next to her holding an umbrella over her head to help keep her dry, all the while getting drenched themselves, since the couple only happens to own one umbrella. Now that’s dedication!
@smudgeandfriends the way he waits patiently for 18 yr old smudge every 5 steps #smudgeandfriends #elderlycat #chonkycat #catdad #catlove #cattok ♬ Angels Harp – HW
Luckily, this level of commitment seems to be paying off. Smudge is losing weight at a slow but steady pace and now weighs around 18 pounds. She still has a couple of pounds to go to get to her first weight loss goal of 16 pounds, and there will likely still be more work to do after that, but five pounds is a very healthy start for a cat!
Kaia and Matt have been documenting Smudge’s entire journey – along with her relationship with her cat sibling, Ruby, and the rest of her life – on TikTok, and she has gained quite a hefty following (no pun intended).
Smudge has close to 130 thousand followers, many of whom have been inspired to start or continue their own weight loss journeys because of Smudge. Some even call their daily exercise routines their “Smudge walks” in honor of the cat.
We commend Kaia and Matt for keeping up with Smudge’s exercise regimen, and we congratulate Smudge on her weight loss and newfound fame. Keep up the good work, Smudge!