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Cat to be evicted from Oregon library

Agatha Christie, a beloved — but apparently not by everybody — cat who has long called the Willamina Public Library home, must go, the city council voted last night.

The city council in Willamina, Oregon, voted 4-0 to evict the 14-year-old cat.

The council gave Head Librarian Melissa Hansen and Youth Services Librarian Denise Willms 10 days to find a new home for Agatha Christie.

It’s not the first time Agatha Christie has been on the verge of homelessness.

In the late fall of 2005, the council voted to ban all but guide animals from city-owned buildings. The community quickly rallied to the cat’s defense — and the council ended up making an exception for the cat, but not her hamster buddies, Hamlet and Othello.

Hamlet and Othello found new homes, and Agatha Christie remained in the library. (The controversy was also partially responsible an unsuccessful recall effort against then Mayor Rita Baller and two council members, according to Yamhill Valley News Register.)

Apparently, a local resident claims her two-year-old daughter was bitten and scratched by the declawed and mostly toothless old cat in late September. The cat was resting on a shelf in the library when the child approached and petted her.

“I’m not against animals, but I have a genuine concern,” one complaining resident said. “Animals get grouchy when they get older. I don’t think an animal should be roaming around a public building. The cat needs to live somewhere else. The library is a public building. I think there are allergy issues and sanitation issues. It’s not a good place for a cat to reside.”

Librarian Hansen was surprised by it all: “She is the most laid back cat there is. She’s been declawed and she hardly has any teeth. She has to eat soft food … Anything a small child can do to an animal it’s been done to Agie. Over the years, I’ve seen all kinds of things happen to her. She has never gone on the offensive. She just gets away and hides under my desk.”


Comment from Anne
Time November 12, 2010 at 4:07 pm

Even tho we live in Florida I would take Agatha in an instant. Maybe if the library ladies see this and need a home for her I will luck out and have a new wonderful cat. Hugs to you Agatha.

Comment from Pascal
Time November 13, 2010 at 12:43 pm

I’m not a cat lover (they’re OK), but what’s a 2-year old doing in a Library anyway?

Comment from Patrick Roberts
Time November 13, 2010 at 1:20 pm

That’s so sad. I bet the library board have been looking for an excuse to get rid of her since the last dispute. I hope she will find a good home for her remaining years.

Comment from Melissa
Time November 14, 2010 at 12:16 am

I’m the librarian in Willamina and want to let all know she is going to a wonderful home with loving people in the country. She’s greeted me daily for over 14 years and I will miss her terribly.

Comment from Pasado
Time November 14, 2010 at 12:42 am

Sad. Some parent cannot control their brat kid, and the poor cat has to pay for it.

Comment from allan bramall
Time November 14, 2010 at 12:47 am

i think a library is a wonderful place to take children of all ages to learn experience and explore the wonders of books. wouldnt it be nice if everyone had such an interest in learning and gaining knowledge that is what the library is for! and why we pay taxes to support it. our children are our future

Comment from Kathy Hines
Time November 16, 2010 at 5:37 pm

I’m glad the child didn’t get a paper cut, that might have resulted in getting rid of the books.

Comment from Cat-chaser’s mom
Time November 17, 2010 at 4:52 am

My then 18month son grabbed, chased and slept on my cat for a year before it died of old age. Whenever the cat cried, I had to go and save the cat.

Comment from Pat Collins
Time November 17, 2010 at 4:58 am

Could someone explain to me how someone can get scratched by a cat that has been declawed and has hardly any teeth? Probably some snooty soccer mom with no sense of humor.

Comment from CharInOhio
Time November 17, 2010 at 5:43 am

As the loving “human” of 8 kitties…I hope they “evict” the people who wanted this kitty evicted. Cats don’t often respond well to changes, esp at her age. I know it may sound dumb to some, but Agatha Christie only really knows that library and is used to those there. It will be sad for her to go elsewhere. Good luck kitty girl…..I hope you find the love and home you need !

Comment from CharInOhio
Time November 17, 2010 at 5:45 am

Maybe you shouldnt let your brat 2 year old child roam the library unattended ? Kids harrass animals and often do mean things to them, then when they hiss, bite or whatever….they blame the animal. Where was the mother ? Don’t take your kids to the library and use it as your babysitter…..watch your kids !

Comment from HH
Time November 17, 2010 at 11:16 am

What has society come to that we can’t even allow a poor old cat to live out it’s life in it’s home? Ridiculous! People are so self centered these days. I bet that mother was just looking for a pay out.. and if she had such a problem with cats, why wasn’t she watching her 2 year old child???

Comment from Schatzie
Time November 17, 2010 at 3:02 pm

Why do they evict the entire city council?

Comment from CatLover
Time November 17, 2010 at 3:30 pm

The 2 year old should be evicted, not the cat. Another complaining, problem parent, wanting to make the rules for everybody using their kid as an excuse. The cat is better off in a private home, she won’t have to be subjected to horrible people like this mother and her kid.

Comment from River Curtis-Stanley
Time November 18, 2010 at 4:08 am

If you contact me at the above URL (which shows you my email address), you’ll receive a very serious offer for Agatha Christie. I know you have placed her in a good home in the country, but if it doesn’t work out, she is welcome in our country home with our boys, Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. We’ll set things up for Agie so that she has a separate place to eat because the boys eat atop a 6 foot tall cat tree. I would anticipate that with her gentle demeanor, declawedness, etc., she might be a fine dialysis companion for me in the evenings when I’m doing a dialysis run. She is entirely welcome here and I only live one state away; have car and carrier, will travel.

Comment from Rick Paine
Time November 30, 2010 at 8:33 pm

About time. I’ve been in that library and that cat smells. Plus, eventhough nobody believes me, I’ve seen it eating the books.