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Stubbs, Cat Mayor Of Alaska Town, Wins Community Support ... by DifferentView2
Sep 07, 2013 | 26 views | 0 0 comments | 0 0 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

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Stubbs, Cat Mayor Of Alaska Town, Wins Community Support After Dog's Assassination Attempt
by DifferentView2
Sep 07, 2013 | 2082 views | 5 5 comments | 51 51 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Mayor Stubbs recoopurrates.
Mayor Stubbs recoopurrates.
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Furst on the scene to render aid and cumfurt.
Furst on the scene to render aid and cumfurt.
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Practical advice Mayor Stubbs gato take.
Practical advice Mayor Stubbs gato take.
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Purr Cat Prime Directive, Dubious sends healing vibes to Mayor Stubbs.
Purr Cat Prime Directive, Dubious sends healing vibes to Mayor Stubbs.
slideshow
ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The honorary mayor of a tiny Alaska town is noticeably absent this week, when he should be hanging out at the general store or sipping his water-catnip concoctions from a wine glass at the pub next door.

Instead, Stubbs the cat is sedated and under veterinary care after he was badly injured in a vicious dog attack in Talkeetna, a quirky community of 900 that elected him in a write-in campaign 15 years ago. Talkeetna has no human mayor, so you could say 16-year-old Stubbs is the reigning leader – of the feline sort, anyway.

"He's everybody's guy," said Stubbs' owner, Lauri Stec, who manages Nagley's General Store, where the orangey-beige cat lives and mingles with locals and tourists alike. Saturday's attack by the loose dog left Stubbs with a punctured lung, bruised hips, a long deep gash on his side and a sternum fractured to the point it might need to be repaired with a plate.

Stec, who said she knows the dog that was involved, has reported the attack with borough animal control officials.

The next few days will be crucial in Stubbs' recovery, but the cat has begun to sit up and eat. A tube inserted in his lung has been removed. All in all, Stubbs is holding his own, Stec said.

"He's a freaking tough boy," she said.

Stubbs, already popular nationally, gained even more fans outside of Alaska when word got out about the attack. Among his followers are tourists stopping in the community that serves as the last stop for travelers and climbers visiting Mount McKinley, North America's tallest peak.

The town, 115 miles north of Anchorage, is purported to be the inspiration for the town in the TV series, "Northern Exposure." It's a place dotted with artist shops, where bachelors are auctioned off at a yearly fundraiser ball and where women compete in a wilderness contest.

Even in such a place, Stubbs is a star.

"We all love him," said Geoff Pfeiffer, a waiter at the West Rib Pub and Cafe located inside the same building as the general store. The staff there is hanging on to Stubbs' wine glass, hoping they get to fill it again with water and a catnip garnish, a feline cocktail for a regular who commands attention every time he comes in.

"It's like Elvis has entered the building," Pfeiffer said.

Stubbs has his own Facebook page, filled with posts this week from well-wishers around the world. There is also a Twitter account purporting to be from Stubbs, but Stec said she's not involved with that account. Attempts by The Associated Press to reach the account owner weren't immediately successful Thursday.

Before Saturday, Stubbs had already used up a few of his nine lives. In the past, he has been shot by a BB gun, and still has a BB lodged inside. He's fallen into a cold fryer vat at the West Rib when the staff was changing the oil. He rode on a garbage truck before jumping off.

"He's a little pistol," Stec said. "He's got a great personality."

She's not alone in thinking that. Donations from well-wishers as far away as Australia have been pouring in for Stubbs' veterinary bills. There's also a jar for donations at the general store placed near a photo of Stubbs.

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October 03, 2013
Honorary Cat Mayor of Alaska Town Slow to Heal

The popular and oh so social feline mayor of an Alaska town is limited to a life of solitary confinement these days as he slowly recovers from severe wounds sustained in a vicious attack by a loose dog.

Before the attack, Stubbs, the honorary mayor of Talkeetna, had free reign of the quirky town that elected him in a write-in campaign 15 years ago. He greeted visitors to his home at Nagley's General Store and enjoyed his wine glass of catnip-spiked water at the next-door bar in the community of 900.

"He's not walking very well," Nagley's assistant manager Skye Farrar said Tuesday. "He's tired and he's weak."

The 16-year-old orange cat must be kept quiet so he can mend from injuries that included a fractured sternum, punctured lung and a deep gash on his side.

Stubbs also is healing from the trauma of the Aug. 31 mauling in the town, 115 miles north of Anchorage. He hasn't been eating very well and is "skin and bones," Farrar said.

Stubbs' owner Lauri Stec, who is out of town this week, has said she knows the dog that was involved. She said she reported the attack with Matatnuska-Susitna Borough animal control officials.

Matt Hardwig, the borough's chief animal control enforcement officer, said there is no record that anyone filed a written complaint about the matter.

"We don't even know what happened," Hardwig said Wednesday.

During his convalescence, Stubbs is being cared for at a house connected to the back of the general store. When Stec brought Stubbs home from an animal hospital more than a week after his attack, she had planned to move him back to the store quickly so he could be around his beloved people and watch them from his bed, a mushing sled piled with furs of caribou, lynx, fox and beaver.

"We had all envisioned that," Farrar said. "But it didn't work out that way."

To keep him quiet during that short-lived experiment, Stubbs' friends had placed him in a small kennel and then in the sled. In no uncertain meows, he let them know that was unacceptable. So back to the quiet house it was.

Farrar said she hopes Stubbs will do better next time he's brought back into the store. Once he gets his groove back, she expects him to carry on with some of his favorite activities, such as watching the store's goldfish. He likes to drink water from the bowl and lick the backs of the goldfish, but he never hurts them.

"He'll be back to his normal self probably in a couple of months," Farrar said. And then, she said, "We expect him to demand a lot of attention."

Stubbs was already popular in Talkeetna, with both locals and tourists alike. The town — purported to be the inspiration for the town in the 1990s TV series, "Northern Exposure" — has no human mayor. Stubbs is it.

When news spread about the attack, new fans emerged from around the world, with scores posting get-well messages on Stubbs' Facebook page, which had almost 28,000 "likes" as of Wednesday morning. Donations for Stubbs and get-well cards and letters also have poured in.

The mauling was not the first swat against Stubbs' nine lives. He's been shot by a BB gun, fallen into a cold fryer vat and once took a ride on a garbage truck before leaping off.