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Stubbs (cat)

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Mayor Stubbs reclining on a car
Stubbs at the West Rib Cafe & Pub in 2006
Honorary Mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska
In office
July 18, 1997 – July 21, 2017
Personal details
Born(1997-04-12)April 12, 1997
Talkeetna, Alaska, U.S.
DiedJuly 21, 2017(2017-07-21) (aged 20)
Talkeetna, Alaska, U.S.

Stubbs (April 12, 1997 – July 21, 2017)[1] was a cat who was the honorary mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska, from July 18, 1997, until his death in 2017.[2]

Stubbs was described as a tourist attraction,[3] having been flooded with cards and letters, and drawing 30 to 40 tourists each day (most of whom were en route to other Alaska destinations, such as Denali)[4] who hoped to meet "the mayor". His position was honorary, as the town is only a historic district.[5]

Every afternoon, Stubbs went to a nearby restaurant and drank water mixed with catnip out of a wine [6][7] or margarita glass.[8]

Stubbs died in 2017 at the age of 20.[9]

Early life


In 1997, Lauri Stec, manager of Nagley's General Store, found Stubbs in a box full of kittens in her parking lot.[10] The owners were giving the kittens away; Stec chose "Stubbs" because he did not have a tail.[6]



Stubbs was widely described as having been elected after a write-in campaign by voters who opposed the human candidates,[11] but NPR pointed out that this could not have happened because "the tiny town has no real mayor, so there was no election."[12] Nagley's General Store was used as Stubbs's "mayoral office" during his tenure.[6]

Stubbs was featured in an effort to protest the 2014 United States Senate election in Alaska when people urged voters to write Stubbs in on the ballot.[13] Stubbs was featured in a video criticizing both the Democratic and Republican candidates for Senate.[13]

One opinion writer for the Alaska Dispatch News insisted that the whole story was false, and that Talkeetna did not have a cat mayor.[14]

Later life


In 2015, Stubbs was growing older and thus slowed down his public presence.[15] He died on July 21, 2017. His owners said that “He was a trooper until the end of his life.”[15] Stubbs lived to the age of 20 years and three months.

Stubbs's owners have suggested that another family cat, Denali, may assume Talkeetna's "mayoralty".[16]



On August 31, 2013, Stubbs was attacked by a dog.[10][17] He was placed under heavy sedation at a veterinary hospital 70 miles (110 km) away in Wasilla, having suffered a punctured lung, a fractured sternum, and a deep cut in his side.[10][18] A crowd-funding page was set up to help pay his veterinary bills.[19] Stubbs remained in the veterinary hospital for nine days before returning to the upstairs room of the general store.[20] As a result, he was discouraged from roaming. Donations toward his care were received from around the world; the surplus was given to an animal shelter and to the local veterinary clinic.[7]

Other incidents included Stubbs being shot by teenagers with BB guns, falling into a restaurant's deep fryer (which was switched off and cool at the time), and hitching a ride to the outskirts of Talkeetna on a garbage truck.[20]

See also

  • List of individual cats
  • Non-human electoral candidates
  • Tama, a Japanese cat who gained fame for being a station master and operating officer
  • Bosco, a dog who defeated two humans to be elected honorary mayor of Sunol, California, in 1981, serving until 1994
  • Catmando, a cat who served as joint leader of the British Official Monster Raving Loony Party
  • Sergeant Stubby, an American dog who was promoted to the rank of sergeant through combat during World War I
  • Nils Olav, a king penguin who served in the King's Guard of Norway from 1972 to his death in 1987, eventually gaining the rank of sergeant
    • Nils Olav II, a king penguin who inherited his predecessor's name and rank, and was eventually promoted to colonel-in-chief and knighted
    • Nils Olav III, a king penguin who inherited his predecessor's name, rank, and knighthood, and currently holds the rank of brigadier
  • Wojtek, a bear enlisted in the Polish Army during World War II
  • Sergeant Reckless, a Korean horse used as a pack animal in the conflict, and the highest ranking horse in the United States Marine Corps


  1. ^ Lamb, Jason (July 13, 2012). "Talkeetna Mayor is a Cat Named Stubbs". KTUU-TV. Archived from the original on 2012-07-15. Retrieved July 19, 2012. cat named Stubbs has been the mayor of Talkeetna for nearly all of his life -- no joke. It's been that way for 2 decades in the small tourist town that boasts nearly 900 residents. The part-manx was named honorary mayor shortly after his birth, and now locals all know the cat as "Mayor Stubbs."
  2. ^ "Alaska town elects a cat for mayor". United Press International, Inc. July 15, 2012. Archived from the original on July 18, 2012. Retrieved July 19, 2012. As the story goes, about 15 years ago, some residents of Talkeetna were unhappy with the candidates who were running for mayor, so as a joke, they encouraged others to elect Stubbs the cat as a write-in candidate, and he actually won.
  3. ^ "Cat marks 15 years as Alaskan mayor". Euronews. July 16, 2012. Archived from the original on May 10, 2013. Retrieved July 19, 2012. He has been a popular tourist attraction ever since in the town of 900 people. 'He was just in the Alaska Magazine, and he's been featured in a few different things,' said Lauri Stec, who works at Nagley's General Store in Talkeetna, where Stubbs hangs out most of the time.
  4. ^ Duerson, Meena (July 17, 2012). "Cat has been mayor of Alaska town for 15 years". NYDailyNews.com. Daily News, L.P. Archived from the original on July 19, 2012. Retrieved July 19, 2012. Stec manages Stubbs's main haunt, Nagley's General Store, and says the cat has been a good leader when it comes to local small businesses. "He doesn't raise our taxes - we have no sales tax. He doesn't interfere with business", she told CNN. "He's honest". Yet Stubbs has exhibited some diva behavior, such as drinking water out of a wine glass laden with catnip every afternoon.
  5. ^ Friedman, Amy (July 17, 2012). "Cat Marks 15 Years as Mayor of Alaska Town". Time Magazine. Archived from the original on July 20, 2012. Retrieved July 18, 2012.
  6. ^ a b c Yan, Holly (2012-07-17). "Mayor of Alaska village walks on four paws". CNN. CNN.com. Archived from the original on 2015-07-02. Retrieved 2013-07-16.
  7. ^ a b Doogan, Sean (November 3, 2013). "Donations to injured Talkeetna cat 'mayor' Stubbs to benefit vet clinic, animal shelter". Alaska Dispatch. Archived from the original on February 12, 2014. Retrieved February 12, 2014.
  8. ^ Simpson, Ian (24 July 2017). "Alaska town's purr-fect unofficial cat mayor dies at 20". Reuters. Archived from the original on 24 July 2017. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
  9. ^ Stubbs, Talkeetna’s honorary cat mayor, dies Archived 2017-07-23 at the Wayback Machine, by Chris Klint, at KTVA; published July 23, 2017; retrieved July 23, 2017
  10. ^ a b c Mungin, Lateef; Watts, Amanda (4 September 2013). "Stubbs the cat, Alaska town mayor, mauled by dog". CNN. Archived from the original on 24 July 2017. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
  11. ^ "Alaska town: Feline mayor is the cat's pajamas". Houston Chronicle. 15 July 2012. Archived from the original on 22 October 2012. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
  12. ^ Morning Edition (2012-07-18). "Following Up On Tuesday's Feline Mayor Story". NPR. Archived from the original on 2013-05-20. Retrieved 2013-07-16.
  13. ^ a b Campbell, Colin (4 November 2014). "A Cat Mayor Just 'Announced' His Campaign For Senate In Alaska". Business Insider. Archived from the original on 5 August 2017. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
  14. ^ Medred, Craig (July 6, 2016). "Silly 'Alaska cat mayor' saga spotlights how easily the media can be scammed". Anchorage Daily News. Opinions. Archived from the original on 26 April 2016. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  15. ^ a b Charles Levin (23 July 2017). "Honorary Alaska 'mayor,' Stubbs the cat, dies at 20". CNN. Archived from the original on 2019-08-28. Retrieved 2019-08-28.
  16. ^ "Feline sad: the cat who was 'mayor' of Alaskan town for 20 years dies". The Guardian. Associated Press. 23 July 2017. Archived from the original on 24 July 2017. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
  17. ^ "Alaska feline mayor Stubbs the cat suffers dog attack". BBC. 5 September 2013. Archived from the original on 28 July 2017. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
  18. ^ Baird, Austin (2013-09-03). "Talkeetna 'Honorary Mayor,' Stubbs the Cat, Claws Way to Recovery". ktuu.com. Archived from the original on 2013-09-21. Retrieved 2013-09-15.
  19. ^ "Save Stubbs the Cat - Mayor of Talkeetna". Indiegogo. 2013-09-03. Archived from the original on 2013-09-21. Retrieved 2013-09-15.
  20. ^ a b Carlton, Jim (2013-10-16). "Mayor of Alaskan Town Is a Cat". Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on 2017-06-02. Retrieved 2013-10-16.