Rufus, The World’s Fattest Lynx, Has Died Aged 15

by : Emily Brown on : 15 May 2020 11:08
Rufus, The World's Fattest Lynx, Has Died Aged 15 Newsflash/Florian Dittert, Wildparkfreunde Schweinfurt

The world’s fattest lynx, named Rufus, has died aged 15 after suffering from a heart condition linked to his age. 

Rufus resided in Schweinfurt Wildlife Park in the southern German state of Bavaria, where he spent most of his days lying around or stealing food from his family members; habits which fuelled his weight gain.


The lynx started to pile on the pounds after he was neutered, meaning he lost all interest in sex and preferred to chill out rather than chase females.

In 2018, Thomas Leier, Schweinfurt Wildlife Park’s manager, said the lynx was ‘quite relaxed’ because ‘where there is no testosterone, there is no sex’.

In spite of his heavy weight, which at one point measured 48kg (7st 7lbs), Rufus was reportedly in great health until just a few months ago, when he began to suffer from a heart condition.


Schweinfurt Wildlife Park announced the lynx had to be put down on Wednesday, May 13, after suffering from shortness of breath due to the disease.

Rufus received veterinary treatment, but his health is said to have deteriorated dramatically, and after consulting with vets the park’s management finally decided it was time to end his suffering.

World's fattest lynx diesNewsflash

The lynx gained attention after Pluckers Wing Bar in Texas turned the big cat into a meme to advertise their food, using a picture of him with belly on full display and writing: ‘Me with a belly full of wings wondering if I should order fried Oreos.’


The picture received a lot of love, no doubt due to how relatable it is, and as a result Rufus gained many fans.

Rufus will live on in our hearts and memes. Rest in peace.

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: Animals, Germany