Chonky Cat Is Polish City’s Biggest Attraction

The Polish city of Szczecin has a message for visitors: Come, see Gacek and marvel at his chonky feline glory, but please don’t feed him!

It’s not a joke. The rotund tuxedo kitty, dubbed the “King of Kaszubska Street” in a 2020 local news report, has become so famous that he’s listed as the top-rated tourist attraction in Szczecin, a riverfront city of 395,000 people in northwest Poland. That’s no small feat in a place that boasts a beautiful historic old town and a bustling riverfront lined with shops, restaurants and attractions.

Locals think Gacek is about seven years old, and some years ago they built him his own little house on the street, where he can be found snoozing comfortably when he’s not strolling the block, charming tourists and nibbling on the food they (still) bring him.

Gacek isn’t bothered by street sounds or crowds of admirers as he naps in his house. Credit: Krola_Karo/Reddit

There are more than 1,100 reviews for the big guy on Google, with an average of a 4.9/5 rating. (We suspect the handful of less-than-perfect reviews are from dogs or jealous rivals.)

“It was worth traveling three hours to feel ignored by him,” one reviewer wrote.

Another visitor got too close to the magnificent chonkster and found out what happens: “He stole a sausage,” the reviewer deadpanned.

As Notes from Poland points out, there’s a sign on Gacek’s house informing visitors that Gacek will “happily pose for photos,” and asking for people to leave food in sealed bags in a box, so Gacek’s caretakers can keep him on a somewhat normal diet and prevent him from gaining more weight. A post on the Slavic social media site VK describes Gacek as calm and nonchalant about the attention he draws, but notes he doesn’t particularly like it when people pet him, and he’s not a fan of the cold.

h/t reader Gilda P. for letting us know about Gacek.

Szczecin is especially busy in the warm summer months, but Gacek is a year-round attraction. Credit: InYourPocket
Gacek is accustomed to being the center of attention and seems to revel in his celebrity as he makes his daily rounds around the block. Credit:hollusaurus/Reddit
Gacek responded with a few excited meows when a Polish TV crew interviewed him in 2020.

10 thoughts on “Chonky Cat Is Polish City’s Biggest Attraction”

  1. Bella is very envious as she is on a strict diet… Jokes aside, the health issues with obesity in cats are extensive, so not too sure about this poor babys ongoing health and life expectancy…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes it is. I know vets that would read the riot act because thier cats are obese. Over the years i have read article after article. Spoken to vets during my years as cat rescuer. Culprit is dry food. My vet said my cat was most likely blocked. He could of died. He gets grain free dry as a treat. He loves wet food anyway. He was never overweight but dry food can cause many problems other than obesity. One problem i see is some pet owners leaving dry food out all day. Not good.


    2. Do you have something called Churos in U.K.? Slim stick with wet treat in it. And i mean slim. My cat sits in front of empty bowl and stares at me. Like i’m starving him. 🤣🤣


  2. To the Big Buddy. Was trying to like your comment on other story about Gacek the cat in Poland but cannot. I am a pc moron. 🤣🤣🤣 These cat stories appear on my phone. When i saw Gacek i said that looks like Oreo!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Making sure no one slips Gacek something bad and/or dangerous must be a full time job, esp. during tourist season. How many caretakers are there?
    Where does Gacek stay in the winter? Surely he doesn’t hang out in that open box?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Some of the details are confusing because I’m relying on Google translate to read the original Polish stories. So for example, one of them references an “owner” but also calls him a stray, which seems like a quirk of translation.

      He has caretakers, that much is clear. I might be able to get some help with the original Polish stories.


  4. I think Gacek is as cute as can be, but I worry about his health. His “chonkiness” might not be too great for his heart. Sorry to criticize you, Gacek, I am very health conscious these days 😻

    Liked by 1 person

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