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Lil BUB, Bloomington's Internet Famous Cat, Has Died

Bloomington famous feline Lil BUB.

(@IAMLILBUB/Twitter)

Lil BUB, Bloomington's internet-ubiquitous cat with wide eyes and a perpetually stuck-out tongue, has died, according to her owner.

Mike Bridavsky, Lil BUB’s “dude,” posted in a newsletter Monday that the 8-year-old cat died in her sleep Sunday morning following an aggressive bone infection.

“Even knowing this, we weren’t expecting her to pass so soon or so abruptly without warning,” Bridavsky wrote. “I truly believe that she willingly made the decision to leave her failing body so that our family would not have to make that difficult decision ourselves.”

Bridavsky owns Russian Recording, a full-service recording studio in downtown Bloomington. He opened Lil BUB's Lil Shop on North Morton in 2016, but closed it two years later to spend more time with family. 

For years, Bloomington-based BUB has had a massive internet presence, with approximately 2.3 million Instagram followers and over 800,000 on Twitter.

After Bridavsky adopted BUB in 2011, it took little time before she endeared herself to social media through videos and photos. Since then, she has appeared with a number of celebrities and been the subject of both a Vice Films documentary and an Animal Planet special.

According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Lil BUB partnered with the organization in 2014 to start Lil BUB’s BIG Fund benefiting special needs pets, which has given out $400,000 in grants to shelters around the country.

“BUB has made a huge difference in the world of animal welfare, and in the lives of millions of people worldwide,” Bridavsky wrote. “I know that her spirit, magic and overwhelming energy are still with us, reminding us every day to be better.”

Emma Atkinson contributed to this story.

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