POMEROY, Ohio — From the streets of Pomeroy, Ohio to Ohio Valley Publishing’s “Cutest Pet,” Otis the court house cat has come a long way.
Otis showed up at the Meigs County Courthouse last fall, hanging around the sheriff’s office, the auditor’s office and making stops at Sonny’s on Main Street in Pomeroy from time to time.
Maryann Parsons, a deputy auditor at the court house, said Otis would visit the sheriff’s office quite a bit as a stray and Sheriff Keith Wood actually named him after the beloved Andy Griffith Show character who would make his home in Mayberry’s jail, at will.
Parsons said the auditor’s office and sheriff’s office share custody of the cat, so to speak. After a couple of rough nights on the streets where the cat was injured, it was recently decided to keep him in the auditor’s office as an “office cat,” with visitation to the sheriff’s office. There’s to be no more “catting around” and so far, the arrangement is working.
Parsons said Otis has a bed made from a box lid, toys in the auditor’s office and plenty of food. He also likes to sleep in any available office chairs.
“He’s got it made,” Parsons said. “He’s loving every minute of it.”
Of course, this isn’t the first time the Meigs County Court House employees have taken a stray under their wings. Several years ago, several offices cared for Shaggy, the collie-mix who ended up being the grand marshal for Pomeroy’s Christmas Parade, and became an unofficial door greeter for The Daily Sentinel.
Employees in the auditor’s office purchased Shaggy a dog bed and gave her all the cheese she could handle – a trait she and Otis share.
“We call him Shaggy Jr. sometimes because he loves cheese,” Parsons said.
Having an office cat is also good for the employees, with Parsons explaining, the cat makes any kind of day, well, better.
The staff at the auditor’s office decided to enter Otis into OVP’s recent “cutest pets” contest because they felt he was too cute not to win. In a field of 46 contestants, including other cats, dogs and one pig, Otis got 58 votes, enough to win the $50 prize which Parsons said will be used to buy cat food.
The sponsor of this year’s contest was River Bend Animal Clinic, Gallipolis.
Also, find Otis on his very own Facebook page by searching “Mr. Otis.”
Beth Sergent is editor at Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.