Rachel says: If your cat is a big podge, a veritable pudding-bomb, this is the diet for him. It takes nerves of steel and a will of iron to maintain it, especially if the pudding-bomb hassles you in the most pitiful and heart-rending way, crying, nudging, sitting imploringly by his dish, rolling his eyes at you. Be prepared to feel like a murderess. After that, the diet is simple: repeat many times the mantra that this cat will not die if he has normal portions of food suited to his age. Then make sure that's all he gets, with an occasional treat of something lean and healthy from your own plate - this is essential to prevent your cat from rehoming himself with Mrs Softie down the road, where he will expand and explode within three weeks.
Ignore soppy friends who are taken in by the pudding-bomb's superb acting and who say accusingly, "He's getting so thin!" or "Poor boy, he's starving!" when for the first time they can almost feel his spine. Feel proud when the pudding-bomb trots nimbly up and down stairs to burgle your socks, instead of plodding and puffing. Get him weighed at the vet's, so that you know there's someone on your side. The pudding-bomb weighed about 9 kg or more when he came to live with me two years ago, and progress towards halving his weight has been slow but steady, despite his determined resistance.
Harry says: First of all, you need a cruel owner, someone who can harden her heart and ignore your desperate pleas. Someone who can buy cat food for seniors, that really dull, reduced-everything cat food made from old carpet, in very small pouches, open it with little (lying) murmurs of appreciation - "mmmm, smells just like home-braised chicken" - and pretend that by giving you additional portions throughout the day, you are getting proper big dinners. And who won't share her own dinner with you, except in microscopic morsels.
Add to that the visit to the vet where said cruel owner is rewarded for this callous regime by finding that while you were a handsome and curvaceous 7.9 kg last time you were weighed, you have dwindled miserably to a mere 6.1 kg. Worse, instead of being taken into care by the vet for your own protection from cruel owner, hear her being congratulated and advised to keep going to the near-death goal weight of 5.5 kg. Plot a move to live with Suzy, who, according to cruel owner, is a big softie, but who I know to be kind, generous, and who understands my needs. The only obstacle to this clever plan is that big fat ferocious Hattie lives with Suzy, and might have to be fought first. In my current state of emaciation, a fight for supremacy is hardly realistic. Oh, how I suffer.