By John McDevitt

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Cats have become valuable employees at some area businesses. “Working Cat” is a program where some hard to place shelter animals are getting jobs and homes.

Philadelphia Brewing Company in Kensington is 40,000 square feet, complete with brewing, bottling, packaging and tasting rooms. And several cats have been taken in over the years — and given jobs — something that comes natural to them — catching critters like mice.

“We don’t really have an issue anymore with the mice problem since we had them,” said Nancy Barton, the brewery’s owner. “We have had cats since we moved here so it’s a good thing.”

And there is no rodent poison used in the brewery thanks to the work of the four-legged friends, like Duke, who was named employee of the month.

“He goes right to work. Duke is pretty good, you would be like ‘let’s go hunt’ — and he gets excited and he runs,” Barton said. “He does his job.”

There are working cat programs offered at several shelters, including the Pennsylvania SPCA where Dr. Adam Corbett is the operations director. He says the adoptees may find themselves being cared for in a new home like in a warehouse, nursery or barn.

McDevitt: I hear they fall right in the middle of ferial and domesticated?

“Kind of, yes. Most of these cats came from hoarding house situations and so they are not well socialized to people, but they are also not used to living on the street the way we think of ferial cats,” Corbett said. “The program is designed to train these cats to live independently and also get use to having people around.”

As the weather gets nicer, the Pennsylvania SPCA is expecting to get cats of all kinds looking for all types of homes.

More information on the program can be found on the PSPCA website.

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