Petey joins PD
Petey, who spent some time as a stray, now has a police department looking out for her.
The Bella Vista Police Department has adopted the friendly, year-old two-tone furball.
Administrative assistant Shelly Frederick said the cat showed up shortly after discussions about a potential office pet in March.
While police chief James Graves did not want a cat inside because of potential allergy issues, he did give approval for an outside cat.
Officers saw a tiny, skittish black-and-white cat outside and, eventually, the then-unknown feline let animal control officer Amber Bowman pick her up.
“We heard her meowing one evening and there she was,” Frederick said. “Beautiful, beautiful tuxedo.”
After deciding to adopt the fluffy stray, she said, the department had her spayed. Animal control officer Bowman took her to the vet, and dispatcher Stacey Wigginton looked after her,
She initially lived under the officers’ bike shed, Frederick explained, but has since been given a carrier with waterproof material over it for shelter. A more permanent shelter, she said, may be coming down the road.
While police keep food and water out for Petey, Frederick said the feline still hunts.
“She brought us a dead mouse, so we know she loves us,” she said.
Frederick explained that the formerly-timid cat has become friendly and sociable after positive experiences with humans.
“She’s very social, very sweet,” she said.
While the cat isn’t likely to be going out on calls, Frederick explained that she still has a role in the department. Petey is a friendly face that officers and staff might need from time to time, she said.
“Most of the jobs in this building are very stressful, and I think she’s a very good tool for letting everyone decompress,” Frederick said.
Wigginton, one of the department’s dispatchers, was the first to buy food for Petey and gave her a place to stay as she recovered from surgery.
She said the kitty does help with her job.
“It’s a stressful job,” she said. “She just automatically brings a smile to your face.”
Dispatcher Stacey Wigginton holds the police department’s cat, Petey.
Police cat Petey splays out across the sidewalk.