Obese skunk put on vegetarian diet to battle bacon addiction
A pet skunk in the U.K. weighs double his ideal weight after years of enjoying an unhealthy diet of bacon sandwiches.
Wed, Sep 30 2009 at 11:36 AM
Mr. Bumble the skunk loves his bacon sandwiches, but his new owners have put him on a vegetarian diet to help shed the extra weight they’ve added to his frame.
At 14 pounds, Mr. Bumble is twice his ideal weight. His previous owners, who indulged his love for pork, gave him to the RSPCA and he now lives at Tropiquaria animal park near near Watchet, Somerset, where he’s fed fruit and vegetables.
His new healthy diet, along with a daily exercise regimen, should help him shed the extra 7 pounds that have made his naturally sleek body so rotund. Skunks’ natural diet in the wild is made up of insects, mice, greenery and dead animals.
Skunks have become popular as household pets in the U.K., but abandonment rates are up as a new law prevents the removal of their scent glands. Tropiquaria park owner Chris Noisier says that they’re not sure whether Mr. Bumble has been de-scented.
"We're now working on dieting him down to what he should be. Clearly bacon butties are not a normal part of a skunk's diet in the wild,” Noisier told the BBC.
"We're putting him on the vegetarian option at the moment. It's very much like a human weight watching issue. He is getting to meet lots of new people so there's lots going on in his life and I suspect it's making up for the lack of his old favorite food."
Related on MNN: View all of our animal stories.
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