Forget what ya heard: The internet's next feline sensation has already arrived, and his name is Snoopy.
Cat loyalists probably recognize the smooshy-faced cat from Facebook or I Can Has Cheezburger, but who is the real kitty behind those impossibly large eyeballs? Snoopy is an Exotic Shorthair, born on May 11th, 2011 in Beijing, China, before arriving in his permanent home in Chengdu, Sichuan five months later.
According to an interview I found with his owner, the meatball of a kitten spends 17 hours a day sleeping, 2 hours a day playing, 1 hour a day grooming, 2 hours a day eating, and 2 hours in a trance thinking about a cat's life.
An especially comic translation of the interview (which is in Chinese) also has her describing his looks as "the most pleasing is the "pie face" cheeks like two lumps of meat, coupled with a long pair of water droplets eye, so that the eyes seem especially innocent."
Snoopy's owner started microblogging pictures of the exceptionally cute kitty on her own site before giving him his own platform, and was surprised by how quickly he earned a legion of fans. His first notable appearance around the internet was when a series of photos of him getting a bath in a pink bucket emerged in late February, followed by recent LOL-cat takes of him getting comfy in bed and trying on a pair of oversized sunglasses.
Only time will tell if this kitty affectionately known as "Red Chubby" will reach the same stratospheric levels of fame as Maru - but for a cat who's barely a year old, he's off to a pretty good start!