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This is Store Sidekicks, an end-of-the-week feature where we profile the fuzzy wuzzy creatures that inhabit shops across the city. If you'd like to nominate your favorite store animal, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week, we found our way to the vegan LES boutique Moo Shoes, which is known for its non-leather shoes and bags. Walking in, we seemed to have interrupted the nap of Bowery, the oldest and fluffiest of the store's four cats. In keeping with the store's vegan philosophy. Bowery and his buddies are all rescue cats adopted from local organizations. (Bowery was named after the street where he was found as a stray.) For the last year and a half, he has been known as the unofficial manager of Moo Shoes. He spends his time lounging by the entrance, unaffected by the coming and going of customers.
Atop the front desk, we found Marlow, Bowery's statuesque black and white playmate. He's the most active and friendly of the cats, constantly climbing atop displays and stealthily walking across the front desk. And he takes his job seriously: You can tell that he enjoys when customers reach down and pet him, but it doesn't mean he'll abandon his position as guardian of the store.
As for the other two cats, sometimes even an experienced store pet photographer can't get a feline to cooperate. We were not able to coax shy Rocco from his perch under the front desk (rumor has it that he's intimidated by Marlow). And Zoe, Moo's only female, was totally unwilling to leave the relative safety of the back of the store.—Daniella Lavian
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