There’s a new cat at the framing shop

For 16 years, Squirt Jackson was a fixture at Custom Picture Framing on Bay Street.

But owner Mallory Jackson found that her longtime pet cat died while sleeping on New Year’s Eve.

Today, Jackson has another pet cat who has taken over where Squirt left off.

After seven months without a “shop cat,” Jackson found the perfect replacement for her large, fluffy orange-colored companion.

Enter Scooter Kitty, a 23-pound, three-legged orange cat.

“I never thought I would replace Squirt,” Jackson said. “He was a very special, cool cat. It was quite surprising to me. I though he would be around longer. But he died peacefully in his sleep.”

Jackson said she found Squirt after he died while sleeping in his bed at the framing shop.

“It was depressing because it was during the holidays,” she said.

For Jackson, Squirt was more than a pet — he was the customer relations cat.

“This was his home and he was almost dog-like,” she said. “He would follow you around and he loved people. If he was laying around in the back room and heard someone in the shop, he would come out and greet the customer. He was an awesome cat and almost dog-like.”

Jackson said she got Scooter Kitty on Aug. 5 — several days after the Art Walk’s pet-themed event.

“There were rescue cats on display,” she said. “I didn’t get him right way, but I though about it. The next day, I cat-proofed the shop and later got the cat.”

She said the cat showed up at a Central Kitsap veterinarian with a pellet wound to his right front leg. Infections set in and the cat’s leg was amputated July 15. The cat also was treated for fleas and ear mites.

After the cat recuperated, it was taken to the Kitsap County Human Society.

At first, the new cat was scared and spent most of the time hiding under the shop’s vacuum press. Slowly, Scooter Kitty started coming out and checking out his new surroundings.

Jackson said the new cat is unique, just like Squirt was, but in a totally different way.

“He’s getting much better with customers and is becoming a real friendly cat,” said Jackson, who estimates the cat is between 2 and 4 years old. “He’s a great cat and perfect for the shop. He’ll never get outdoors and he’s safe here.”

She said because she doesn’t have a continuous stream of customers in her shop, the cat is good company and kind of a stress reliever. She brushes him for 15 minutes every day after work.

Despite missing a front leg, Jackson said Scooter Kitty gets around the shop fairly well.

“It took him about three weeks to learn how to jump,” Jackson said. “He surprised me one Monday when I came in to check on him. Out of nowhere he just jumped up on my work table.”

The cat spends time in the front window, just like Squirt.

“He has a lot of energy in the morning, but calms down about 1 p.m., Jackson added.


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