DIY Lawn Care & Gardening

Home Improvement Store Cats and the DIYers Who Love Them

Some call them mousers. Some call them managers. One thing is for sure: home improvement store cats are a-meowzing!
Kat Hodgins Avatar
An orange tabby cat named Morris sits on a rack in a home improvement garden center.


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Hardware stores in rural areas have long depended on cats to control rodents. Over time, these store cats became fixtures in the community, with both customers and employees adoring their scruffy little friends. 

The tradition of store cats is expanding beyond small-town shops. It’s spreading its paws to national chains, with large hardware stores across America and beyond hosting their own store cats. 

Each cat has a story; some have jobs, and others simply enjoy the attention they get at the store while lounging among the plants in the garden center. Get to know some of these beloved hardware store cats.  

Morris and Sheba in Colorado

A black cat named Sheba and an orange tabby named Morris rest on a ledge in front of paint samples at a hardware store.

Morris, the cat, is in charge of the Country Ace Hardware store in Granby, Colorado, with his trusty sidekick, Sheba, by his side. Morris loves training Sheba on everything happening in the store when they aren’t busy catching or scaring rodents. You can read all about their adventures in Morris’ blog.   

If you notice cat hair around the store, it’s likely from a literal cat nap. These Ace Hardware cats happily snooze on store cushions or pillows without a moment’s hesitation. You have to admire the fact that they’re not afraid of being fired for sleeping on the job.  

Mr. B in Oregon

Liz Pharas, owner of Nyssa Mercantile (True Value Hardware), says “I love cats but my husband is allergic to them.” Stars aligned when she donated to the Feral Project in town and told the project founder she wanted a store cat. Three weeks later, a black cat named Bagheera had found a new home at her store in Oregon.

“He immediately captured everyone’s hearts. We shortened his name to Mr. B and everyone in town now knows him.” Mr. B loves getting petted, lounging on the checkout counter (and Pharas’ desk), and walking around like a store greeter.

Leo in New Jersey

Leo is a proud Mount Laurel, New Jersey, Home Depot cat who charms everyone who walks through the doors. At first, he was brought in to help control rodents, but he has since become a cherished part of the store. Employees in the garden section are careful to steer Leo clear of any plants that are toxic for cats.

Customers love to pet him, and employees ensure he is fed and has a comfortable place to sleep after the store closes each day. Leo calls the garden section home but roams wherever he pleases throughout the day. 

Cheeks in New Jersey

Cheeks is a Deptford, New Jersey, Home Depot cat that store employees like to consider ‘the boss.’ 

Working just 15 miles away from Leo the Cat, Cheeks helps to keep mice in check while providing welcome stress relief for customers and employees. Every night, Cheeks does a quick store patrol before getting comfy and falling asleep in the training center.

Mama in Arizona

Mama is a celebrity store cat who lives and works at a Home Depot in Chandler. One employee claims, “This is her store, we just work here.” 

A talented rodent catcher, Mama takes cat naps wherever she chooses. She even gained the approval of a skeptical manager who noticed her prolific mouse-catching abilities. Store employees keep track of her whereabouts every few hours and inspect her for pests to ensure she’s okay. 

Nate the Great in Massachusetts

The Aubuchon Hardware store in Beverly, Massachusetts, is home to Nate the Great, who has his own Instagram account. His posts include photos of him sleeping on safety vests, lying down on the cash register counter, and relaxing in shopping baskets.  

All that mice chasing must get tiring, so Nate clearly earns some R&R at the end of each workday.  

Emma and Max in South Carolina

The East Bay Hardware Store in Charleston, South Carolina, has two cats that call the store home, Emma and Max. In addition to their rodent-chasing duties, this playful duo enjoys playing with string and gently tapping ornaments on Christmas trees during the holiday season. 

With two cats in the store, there’s never a dull moment for customers and employees.   

Daniel and Carter in Maine

Daniel is big on ‘me time’ at Shoppers True Value Hardware in South Portland, Maine. He demands the finest surroundings, insisting upon luxurious cat beds and furniture with space for cats for his siestas. And during work hours, Daniel sometimes chases rodents. Carter is endlessly curious and loves cuddles.

When it gets chilly outside, Daniel wears a sweater. We aren’t sure if he enjoys them, but it sure looks cute.