Nicholas Fleming, an eighth grader at Saint Vincent de Paul Regional School in Mays Landing, loves cats. So for his science fair experiment, titled: “Is that cat fat?” he measured 20 of them, including his own pet, Luna, to find out which ones were at healthy weights and which could stand to lose a few.
“I recorded their breed, gender, whether they were indoor or outdoor cats and their ideal weights and determined their ‘pet body score,’” he explained at the Jersey Shore Science Fair at Stockton University.
How did he figure out a cat’s ideal weight? He got the information from a veterinary web site.
Where did he find 20 cats willing to cooperate?
“My mom and I volunteer at the Funny Farm,” an animal rescue sanctuary in his hometown. The owner let him measure the cats there.
Stockton hosted nearly 600 students from 43 New Jersey middle and high schools at the science fair, the region’s largest such competition. Over 545 projects submitted by students in sixth through 12th grades were judged on criteria including creative ability, scientific thought/engineering goals, thoroughness, skill and clarity.