It is fairly well established in Internet lore that cats love cheeseburgers.

But there was nothing to LOL about when an animal welfare worker in New Zealand came across a seriously diseased cat who had been getting by on nothing but McDonald's cheeseburgers for over a year.

Apparently Frankie had become something of a house cat for patrons of the McDonald's restaurant in Frankton after being abandoned there by his family when he was just a kitten.

For the past 12 to 18 months by the local SPCA's estimates, Frankie has been surviving on food purchased for him by people who pass by the restaurant's drive-thru window.

"You would go through the drive-through and ask for a burger for you and an extra patty for Frankie," said Waikato SPCA field officer Jessica Watson. "He would watch you and trot after the car, wait until you stopped the car and then you would toss him the meat. It was his little routine."

It was Watson, a regular of that particular "Macca's," who noticed that the steady diet of burgers and nuggets was taking its toll on Frankie.

His face was swollen; he was having trouble closing his eyelids; and his coat was coming apart.

Watson decided to take Frankie home and nurse him back to health, but the task soon proved to be a super-sized one.

Having become addicted to junk food, Frankie refused to eat anything else.

"I seriously considered going back there to get him a burger," Watson said. "I would put pet food down and he would give me a look like, 'What is that?'"

Eventually, Frankie came around to the cat biscuits, and slowly but surely his health began to improve.

Now that he's "clear-eyed and shiny-coated" once again, Frankie is looking for a new place to live.

The Waikato SPCA has put up an adoption notice for Frankie on their Facebook page, but so far no takers.

Still, it doesn't seem like Frankie will need to wait much longer: Many of the commenters fondly recalled previous interactions with him, and have expressed a desire to see him end up in a loving home.

[H/T: Arbroath via TWBE, LifeWithCats, photo via Facebook]