Library Cat

When you go to the library, the last thing you might expect is a cat. But cats in libraries in fact have a long history. Cats have been kept in libraries since antiquity but served mostly a singular role: pest control. Rats could potentially ruin a library’s catalogue so keeping a cat around protected valuable manuscripts and books.

Libraries may not have to worry about rats and other pests these days (or at least, we hope not) but some still keep their feline companions around. They can befriend patrons, boost the morale of librarians and can have a therapeutic effect on both. Having a library cat can even help with library recognition and can be a big part of their social media presence or marketing strategy. Of course, this doesn’t mean that cats are always welcome library guests.

The most famous library cat by far is Dewey Readmore Books, the former library cat for Spencer Public Library in Iowa, which became a bit of an international celebrity and whose story became #1 New York Times Bestseller in 2008.

So does that mean Alexander College library should get a library cat? Probably not. We’ll just settle for cat memes.