If you own a Maine Coon or a Ragdoll cat, you may think you know what a big kitty is like. Those breeds can grow up to 20 or more pounds and often act more like dogs than typical cats. But while those fluffy house-cats are big, they aren’t anywhere near the level of BIG that Hercules the Liger maintains.
Hercules Stands Over Six Feet Tall
Born from an African lion father and a Bengal tiger mother, Hercules is a massive hybrid cat weighing more than 900 pounds. He’s over six feet tall from ground to ear tip, and around 11 feet long (which means standing on his hind legs he’s 11 feet tall, if you can wrap your mind around that). As the Largest Living Cat in the World (according to Guinness Book of World Records) he puts those Maine Coons and Ragdolls to shame.
Bred in captivity, like all Ligers, Hercules lives at Don Antle’s Myrtle Beach Safari wildlife preserve in South Carolina. He spends his days eating 20 pounds of meat, swimming, and running around at 50 miles per hour. You’d think that 900 pounds would signal a chonky boi, but Hercules manages to keep the weight off by cavorting with his trainers around his home.
Bred From A Female Lion And Male Tiger
Ligers (and tigons, which are bred from female lions and male tigers) are not found in the wild, as tigers and lions don’t often share the same environment. They are rare even at zoos and wildlife parks, so it’s hard to say if being huge is normal for them. Most do get bigger than their parents, though they can’t all claim to be over the weight of their mother and father combined like Hercules can.
As the largest carnivore in the world, and the biggest cat most people will ever see, Hercules is more than memorable, and definitely not a kitty you’d want living in your home with you. The first time all 900+ pounds of him tried to cuddle in your lap for snuggle time would probably be the last.