'Big Barsik,' The 41-Pound Feline Wonder, Has Finally Found His Forever Home

Erica Brosnan
November 19, 2019 - 5:21 pm

Angelique Iuzzolino


NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — A hefty feline that was too large for a New York City shelter has finally found his forever home.

Barsik, affectionately called “Big Barsik,” is a 5-year-old tabby cat that gained national attention when he was dropped off at the Animal Cares Center of New York City (ACC) in April at an astounding 41-pounds.

The shelter quickly posted on its Facebook page looking for someone who could adopt Barsik and help get his weight under control.

Anjellicle Cats Rescue, Inc. saw the post and knew they had to help. Volunteer Angelique Iuzzolino immediately came to the rescue and took Barsik in as a foster.

For months, the substantial cat was living with Iuzzolino, who documented his progress on Instagram, under the username bigbarsik.

A post shared by Barsik the Cat (@bigbarsik) on

Since April, Barsik has lost almost 10 pounds and Iuzzolino says his health continues to improve.

“This is largely just due to his diet, but he is also much more active and we make a point to play with him and let him explore as he desires,” she told WCBS 880.

Now that he weighs in at 32.3-pounds, he’s ready to move in with his forever mom, Meredith – who Iuzzolino calls “the best fit” for Barsik.

A post shared by Barsik the Cat (@bigbarsik) on

“She has been following him on Instagram for many months and came to both of the in-person meet & greets we held for Barsik, so I had already spent a lot of time with her,” she said. “We did get other applications, but hers ended up being the best fit anyway.”

According to Barsik’s account, he will be moving in with his new family on Friday, Nov. 29 – and Iuzzolino notes that the famous feline will remain a resident of the five boroughs.

She adds that his new owner “will continue with his current plan and stay with his current vet for now.”

And while his new family may find a new veterinarian closer to their home, his owner is “dedicated to keeping him active and has a good idea of what he likes to do.”

As for Iuzzolino, she, her friends and her family have spent months with Barsik and tells WCBS 880 that she is “torn about letting him go.”

“While it will allow me to get back to my true passion, nursing mothers with kittens, I put a lot of time, energy, and tears into this special boy; I suppose it's a bit like when a child moves out on their own,” she said in an email. “We have bonded a lot over the last seven months, but he will be much happier with a home, and a human, all to himself.”