NORMAN, Okla. (KFOR) – It is a small retail shop off Main Street, specializing in exotic animals, especially reptiles, including dart frogs, chameleons, turtles, tortoises, lizards, and lots of snakes.

“They’re very misunderstood creatures,” she tells us as ‘Tie’, a 20-pound boa constrictor squirms around her neck.

“He’s ready for his close-up.”

Catherine Cook has loved animals all her life.

As an adult her house became full of them, which is part of the reason she opened this store.

Cook admits, “It got to the point where my house filled up and I thought I might as well do what I love as a job.”

There are more traditional pets for sale here. Bunnies, birds, ferrets, guinea pigs, even hairless guinea pigs (called skinny pigs), and one ‘cat’ who actually named the store.

“Cat’s Critters just kind of stuck,” she smiles.

If she was ever going to do anything for a living, Catherine, who’s always gone by Cat, would have to own a place like this.

“You’re the only cat in the store,” we ask?

“Yep,” she smiles. “That’s true.”

Cat’s Critters does have permanent resident. She keeps a few animals on hand as pet ambassadors, or to help entertain at parties she holds here.

“My job, basically, is just hanging out with them and taking care of them.”

But if you’re one of those different types of people who’ve always wanted something like a caramel striped corn snake or a Syrian Hamster, ‘Cat’ is the one cool cat you should talk to first.

Just like any cat would be, she’s in charge here. In fact, Cat’s Critters wouldn’t be here without her.

“A little bit of everything,” she laughs, “and I love them all.”

Cat’s Critters opened in early April at 235 34th Ave. SW in Norman.


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