Collins aka Al Collins, a beautiful gray tabby with a white front and a crick in his tail, is a local legend on the Puget Sound campus. Though he may not receive as much publicity as Dewey Readmore Books, the famous Spencer, Iowa library cat (having both a book and a movie telling his life adventures), he is well known and cared for by many staff, students, and professors on campus.
Collins made the campus his home approximately 14 years ago. He made his debut by coming to the library loading dock and meowing at the back door, soon enticing the several cat lovers on the library staff to put out a dish of dry and wet food on the porch daily. In the summer he now shares lunch with Elin Gratton, a library staff member; deli Chicken or Turkey are his favorite foods.
On warm summer days or in freezing cold winter, Collins can be seen making his rounds from Anderson Langdon Dorm to the back porch of Collins Library. He has a constant supply of food and water in both areas and probably several other places on campus - who knows how far this adventuresome feline roams. He also has a devoted group of friends from Facilities Services and other dorm areas. You can even spot individuals driving up to the dorms, preparing a gourmet meal for Collins, calling him, petting him, and then going on their way.
Last year there was grave concern about Collins' well being. He was bitten by a raccoon and a large abscess formed on his back. Ed Cole, Facilities Services, got him into a carrier and off to a local Veterinary Hospital. Ed, staff from the Library, Jones Hall, Facilities, and OT/PT all graciously donated funds for his vet bill. Ed Cole administered an I.V. and antibiotics, nursing him back to health in his own home. Alas, Ed was not able to convince his family cat, Jasmine, (another Puget Sound campus feline whom he adopted) that Collins was only there on a temporary basis. She would have nothing to do with this new resident - vocal protests and hissing were evident!
When Collins finally got well, he came back to his outdoor world of the University campus. All of his old friends and a contingent of new admirers greeted him with food, attention and joy! Collins survived the snow and cold of this past December and continues to warm the hearts of his many campus friends just by his presence and unique feline purrsonality! Hopefully, you will have the opportunity to meet or check-out Collins aka Al Collins, the University of Puget Sound celebrity cat!