Stubbs, the cat who served as mayor for the Alaskan town of Talkeetna for 19 years, died on Friday (21 July).

The four-legged mayor's owners announced its death late on Saturday in a statement. "Stubbs lived for 20 years and 3 months," the family said.

"He was a trooper until the very last day of his life; meowing at us throughout the day to pet him or to come sit on the bed with him and let him snuggle and purr for hours in our lap," the statement said.

Talkeetna — a town with a population of about 900 — elected Stubbs as a write-in in 1998 due to lack of viable human candidates. Though the yellow cat lacked the legislative and rhetorical ability of a typical politician, it always did well in the ballots.

"Over 75% of visitors ask 'Where's the mayor?' or come in with this statement 'I have an appointment with the mayor,'" the statement announcing its death said.

"I think we heard those two statements over 100 times a day during our first year."

Stubbs had worked as mayor out of Nagley's General Store in the town but after surviving a dog attack in 2013 and a false report of its death in late 2016, it cut back on visits to the store and largely stayed at home.

"Stubbs did a couple TV shows and more than a handful of interviews, but was not fond of the camera and all the people; it had gotten to be too much for him," the cat's owners said.

The family has added that though Stubbs is no more, they have one more kitten, which is perfect to take its place.

Speaking about the kitten, the family said: "Amazingly, Denali has the exact personality as Stubbs.

"He loves the attention; he's like a little puppy when he's around people. We couldn't have asked for a better understudy than Denali — he really has followed in Stubbs' paw prints in just about everything."

Stubbs, honorary feline mayor of Alaskan town
The four-legged mayor was elected as a write-in in 1998 due to lack of viable human candidates - Representational image VYACHESLAV OSELEDKO/AFP/Getty Images