A family’s pet cat has grown so big it has been mistaken for a lion - and he’s still growing. Murphy the Maine Coon, who already requires specialist equipment due to his size, has surprised even his owners with his stature.
Sareeta Brewin, 46, says she spends a fortune feeding him as he munches through £60 worth of dry food every month from their Worcester home. Thanks to that appetite, she has also had to buy an extra-large litter tray to accommodate Murphy’s massive bulk.
Weighing in at 11kg (24.3lbs) and measuring a whopping 104cm (41ins) from nose to tail he is closing in on the world record. And at only 12 months old, he still has plenty of growing to do.
Sareeta says people often mistake him for a dog and even a lion and she frequently gets tagged in posts of big cat sightings across Worcestershire. The mum-of-three said: “Murphy is one now and we got him last November. He was about 13 or 14 weeks old and at that stage he was the same size as our regular cat who’s only little.
“It’s like we’ve got a cat and a mouse with the size of him. She looks so small compared to him. Maine Coons grow until they’re about three-years-old so who knows how big Murphy is going to get, he’s already the size of your average dog.
“I don’t know what I expected with him, I knew he’d be big but I didn’t expect him to be that big. Now other cats look tiny compared to him. People do sometimes mistake him for a dog, they also make remarks about the wild cat on the loose. Others say ‘bloody hell, is that a lion?’ He is very feline looking.”
Last Christmas, Murphy chewed his way through dozens of festive lights and the family’s iPhone cables which cost a total of £300 to replace. Sareeta, a product manager in medical devices, said: “We call him Thor because he’s very handsome but he is quite dim.
“He does eat a fair bit. He goes through a £20 3kg biscuit bag a month. I’m glad he prefers the dry biscuits as it would be so expensive for the meat. If it was wet food it would be a fortune.
“We haven’t put up our Christmas decorations up this year yet. He chewed his way through 12 sets of lights last year, we had to buy reinforced cables around the house as he chews them. We spent an absolute fortune on them.
“I’ve even had to buy a dog carrier for him when I take him to the vets because he won’t fit in a cat carrier. He’s like a cat and a dog. They’ve very much like dogs, he greets you and brings you his toys to play with. He talks and communicates. How Huskies are very vocal, Maine Coons are too. He talks.
“He is still essentially a kitten, he bombs around the house and has that mad half hour. The dogs are a bit freaked out by him, they don’t mind him. The little cat doesn’t mind him, they do play.”
Sareeta said she’ll be keeping an extra close eye on his length in the coming years to see if he can break the record. She added: “I’m sure we could get a few extra inches out of him but I’ll be keeping a close eye on him just in case.” Murphy still has a fair bit of catching up to do to beat world record breaking cat Stewie from Nevada, USA, who measures a whopping 123cm (48.4ins) long.