If someone calls you a “fat cat,” that person is basically saying you’re ridiculously rich and leading a life of luxury. But if you happen to be a severely obese cat of the four-pawed variety, you can take that moniker to heart, literally.

Some believe SpongeBob (not the cartoon) is now the fattest cat on the planet, weighing in at a monstrous 30 pounds. That might not be so much for a good-sized dog, or a small child, but it’s an incredible amount for a domestic cat. And why should SpongeBob lose some of this weight, you might be wondering? After all, if he’s okay with his self-image, why not leave the poor kitty alone?

Sponge Bob is dieting for the same reason many of us do. To be more popular with potential suitors, in case one of them wants to take him home. This particular feline fatty resides at the Animal Haven animal shelter in New York. The staff working there has devised a plan to get Bob moving about, so he can shed some of those excessive pounds, and become more attractive to anyone who might like to adopt him.

There was a bigger cat once, but he died, so Sponge Bob is the now champ, as far as cat weight goes. Catnip and other treats are used to get him exercising, while his meals are made up of a special protein and vegetable diet. The Animal Haven staff hope he’ll be able to lose up to three pounds a month, until he can get down to a more reasonable fighting weight, and win over the hearts of any would-be adoptive parents.

Perhaps he hears the feline version of the ‘Rocky’ theme song in his head when he’s running around, trying to slim down, or maybe he’s just thinking, “More catnip, more catnip, I need me some more catnip.” Why not adopt him and find out for yourself?

[Update: BuzzFeed claims that Garfield, the 40lb feline recently brought into a Long Island, NY shelter, is now the world's fattest cat. Check out photos here. We'll have more on this story as it develops...]