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Sept. 24, 2012 at 6:00 AM
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Shelter looking for housing for 42-lb. cat

RICHARDSON, Texas, Sept. 23 (UPI) -- Employees at an animal shelter in Texas say they are trying to find a good home for a 42-pound stray cat.

The cat, a female tabby named Skinny, was found in the back yard of a Richardson resident last week and was later picked up by animal services and brought to the Richardson Animal Shelter, The Dallas Morning News reported Friday.

Because of Skinny's size, veterinarians said she needs to spend some time at another shelter so she can safely lose weight.

"With cats you have to be more careful with dieting, as too-rapid weight loss can have adverse affects," said Yvette Pedroza, a veterinarian at the East Dallas Veterinary Clinic. "The cat can suffer from diseases such as hepatic lipidosis [fatty liver syndrome]. ... Usually we recommend a weight loss of 1 percent per week."

Skinny "can't even get into a normal litter box," said Dennis Wooten, manager at the shelter.

Wooten said his shelter has received hundreds of phone calls from people eager to adopt Skinny, but fears many of the callers wished to adopt her merely for the novelty of her size.

"The cat will be placed with an animal shelter so [she] gets proper care," Wooten said. "There are going to be some long-term expenses involved in taking care of this cat."

Until then, Skinny has been placed on a low-calorie diet and is getting some exercise, KDFW-TV, Dallas/Fort Worth reported.

"Be cognizant that you don't overfeed your pets," Wooten said.

Skinny dippers miss out on record

DRURIDGE BAY, England, Sept. 23 (UPI) -- More than 200 people gathered at a beach in England to participate at an attempt to break the world record for the most people skinny dipping at one time.

Skinny dippers from across England joined together at a beach in Druridge Bay at sunrise Saturday and ran into the sea, the CNN reported.

Dubbed the North East Skinny Dip, organizers hoped to set Guinness World Record, as well as raise money for the mental health charity, Mind.

Although organizers said they likely failed at their attempt to set the record, the event was a success nonetheless, the Sunday Sun reported.

"Loads of us ran naked into the sea to raise money for Mind and to celebrate ourselves and our bodies," said organizer Jacqueline Higginson, 34. "I did a skinny dip last year where we broke the world record, I don't think there was enough to do it today but there was enough of us for it to be a lot of fun."

Higginson said the event raised more than $3,000.

"We think we have reached our target of 2,000 pounds ($3,249) but donations are still flooding in so hopefully it will be more than this," she said.

Detroit sets hopscotch record

DETROIT, Sept. 23 (UPI) -- A group of Detroiters set a record for the longest hopscotch course and got people thinking about their city, organizers said.

Some 30 people on Monday began painting about 22,000 chalk squares on the sidewalks of Detroit to set the record, the Detroit Free Press reported. The project, called Hopscotch Detroit, was finished Friday night and videotaped to send in for verification.

Hopscotch Detroit was organized by two groups called Wedge Detroit and Imagine Detroit Together to get people to think about the city beyond a stereotype.

"We were talking about Detroit and how much is going on here," Laura Willming, one of the organizers, said at a celebration Saturday. "It's not really reflected in the streets and what you see."

Parts of the course have washed away, but most of it is still visible.

"It's on the streets, people can play ... and it doesn't get in anybody's way," Willming said. "It's amazing how little we have to do, because it's intuitive for people to hop. It just reminds them to have fun."

Fla. woman's Mickey collection sets record

CELEBRATION, Fla., Sept. 23 (UPI) -- A Florida woman who holds the record for the largest documented Mickey Mouse memorabilia collection in the world says she has about 6,000 Mickey items.

Janet Esteves first set the Guinness World Record in 2006 when she had more than 2,100 Mickey Mouse items and has broken her record since then, the Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel reported Saturday.

"This is a passion," Esteves said. "Actually, it's an obsession. Some people think it's crazy, but frankly, I don't care."

The latest Guinness count put Esteves' collection at 4,127 items, but she says she actually has about 2,000 more pieces that have not yet been cataloged and counted.

Esteves, 57, keeps her collection, which includes plush dolls, pin and key-chain displays, and figurines, on display in her home in Celebration.

"I'm always looking for empty spaces on the walls and thinking, 'Which Mickey can I put there?'" Esteves said.

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