Cats are well known for their independence but one cheeky moggy really takes the biscuit – quite literally – as most days he sneaks in to a pet shop!
It says Pets at Home above the door and that’s exactly what this wiley pet does – regularly wandering in and making himself thoroughly at home in the Boston store.
For the last few months the ginger and white tom has been strolling down the aisles helping himself to the catnip toys, sleeping on the cat beds and sitting down to watch the fish tanks and rodents.
His cheeky antics caught the attention of staff at the Queen Street store – who now call him Graham.
“When we open the doors at 9am he’s always our first customer,” said deputy manager Vicky Coker.
“Sometimes he sits on the mat and greets customers as they come in. I think he’s built up a bit of a fan base.”
Such is Graham’s love for the store that he is now regularly seen sitting outside the front doors first thing in the morning like an over-eager customer waiting for the store to open.
At 9am the doors open for him and he strolls in to be greeted by a myriad of sights and smells of cat treats, small critters in cages and colourful fish tanks.
“He first showed up around three months ago and he’s here most days,” said staff member George Tarbox. “Initially we discouraged him from coming in, but he kept coming back. We thought it wouldn’t be very good to keep shooing him out as pets are always welcome at Pets at Home, it’s just that they usually come in on a lead with their owners!”
Staff decided to give him the odd cat treat to discourage him from stealing, and occasionally play with him using toys that aren’t for sale.
“We have caught him chewing on a packet of cat food before, but he’s generally no trouble and likes to sit and watch the rodents, dragons and fish we have in store,” George added. “He’s become a bit of a celebrity too as we often have customers asking where he is.”
Graham does have a home, but like a kid in a sweet shop, he can’t help but be enticed in by the treats on offer.
See more in Wednesday’s Boston Standard