Residence hall community cares for feline friend

Though she is known by many names, the cat living outside Johnson & Hardwick residence halls is a familiar face to many students. The residence hall community provides food and shelter outside of the building. | Eric Dao TTN
Though she is known by many names, the cat living outside Johnson & Hardwick residence halls is a familiar face to many students. The residence hall community provides food and shelter outside of the building. | Eric Dao TTN

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Hooter the Owl isn’t the only animal familiar to students. One stray cat has lingered outside of Johnson and Hardwick halls long enough to make a name for itself.

Within the first few weeks of school, some students said they noticed the stray cat lingering outside of J&H. During the first fire drill of the semester, many more interacted with the friendly stray, even taking pictures with it.

Eventually, shelters were erected for the cat. Food was also left out for it behind the dining hall.  Scott Fox, a junior tourism and hospitality management major, said he feels the cat is a warm addition to Main Campus.

“A lot of students give this cat a lot of love,” Fox said. “I think it brings a lot people together.”

The residence hall community flocked to Facebook to name the cat, though no students could confirm that a name was agreed upon. Some fan favorites include J&H Cat, Mr. Peabody, Mr. Meowgi and Zachary Binx, based off the cat Thackery Binx in the film “Hocus Pocus.”

As the proposed names suggest, most students haven’t realized this cat is actually a ‘Mrs.’

Although she has started quite a conversation, this stray is not the only cat on campus. Another had been reportedly living around 1300 residence hall, but had to be removed after safety concerns arose once witnesses reported the cat had been foaming at the mouth.

Fortunately, the cat outside J&H has reportedly shown no signs of illness or aggressive behavior thus far.

J&H faculty declined to comment about the cat living behind their residence hall, but most students, like freshman business and management major Alexis Small, have friendly feelings toward the feline.

“[The cat] is a nice surprise,” she said. “I think it makes everyone really happy, having it around.”

Since residence halls prohibit pets, students said there have been collective efforts to adopt the cat as a Temple community pet. Yet other students are concerned with the welfare of the cat, having an unstable life despite the attention it receives.

“Does this cat have a home?” junior music and dance major Greg Slaughter said. “Do people feed it? It’s kind of concerning because I wouldn’t want to see this cat suffer.”

Eric Dao | TTN
Eric Dao | TTN

For now, the cat is still living behind J&H and continues to hold a celebrity status among students.

Kate Reilly can be reached at kate.reilly@temple.edu

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