Alaska town's purr-fect unofficial cat mayor dies at 20

Stubbs, the cat who became the unofficial mayor and a tourist attraction for the small Alaska town of Talkeetna, has died at 20, his owners said.

Stubbs went to sleep on Thursday night in the town about 60 miles (96 km) north of Anchorage and never woke up, the Spone family said in a statement late on Saturday.

"He was a trooper until the very last day of his life," the family said.

The cat, which liked to drink water and catnip from a margarita glass, was elected unofficial mayor of Talkeetna in 1997, news reports said.

The Spones acquired Stubbs when they bought Nagley's General Store and a restaurant in 2015 from his previous owners, the family said.

Stubbs, who survived a dog attack in 2013, became a tourist draw for Talkeetna, a town of about 900 people near Denali National Park.

Alaska town's unofficial cat mayor dies at 20

  • Stubbs the cat had been mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska, since he was a kitten.
  • Talkeetna, a town with a population of about 900, elected the yellow cat mayor in a write-in campaign in 1998. Since Stubbs got elected, the town hadn't had a human mayor in years.
  • His office is located at Nagley's Store in Talkeetna, Alaska.
  • Mayor Stubbs is a very busy cat.
  • Often, his hard work called for a well-deserved drink at the end of the day.
  • 'The Mayor' has lots of fans.
  • He makes time for them whenever he can.
  • But sometimes, duty calls.
  • As Mayor, Stubbs makes hard decisions every day.
  • From answering to the needs of the town to chasing that pesky toy, there's always work to be done.
  • Which is why sometimes, Stubbs takes cat naps to refuel.
  • So that he can re-energize and be his best cat-Mayor self again.
  • Rest in Peace, Mayor Stubbs. Thank you for your public service.

More than 75 per cent of visitors asked: "Where's the mayor?" or "I have an appointment with the mayor," the family said.

Stubbs increasingly stayed at home this year instead of going to the store, where he was frequently passed from hand to hand by people taking photos with him, the statement said.