For Sue Meigs, German Village was just a stopover on her way to Olde Towne East, where her gift store was under construction.

She was on a month-to-month lease while her permanent store, on Parsons Avenue and Oak Street, was being built.

After 22 years, she's still at 195 Thurman Ave. -- but not for long. The lease on her pet-supplies business, theDogWorks/Cats2, is expiring, and she must vacate the building by the end of April.

"I'm just going to rest," Meigs said of her immediate plans. "I'm going to do some gardening, volunteering."

The Olde Towne East storefront never materialized, and Meigs stayed put, opting to keep her gift-shop business, then called Urban Axis, in German Village.

In 2001, a taxi crashed into the front of her store, near the southwest corner of Thurman Avenue and Jaeger Street.

Meigs said she always sold some pet merchandise so she decided to take her business in that direction and renamed the store.

She said many of the store's items are on sale as she tries to liquidate merchandise.

Independent suppliers of pet food, treats and toys already were rare; Village Pet Supply in the nearby Brewery District closed last summer.

Meigs said with skyrocketing rents and more pet owners buying merchandise online, it is difficult for a low-key independent business owner to make a living.

It's unclear what might replace theDogWorks/Cats2. A spokeswoman for property owner David Cattee declined to disclose the name of the new tenant because of a confidentiality agreement.

Devoney Mills, manager of Stump, a plant store at 220 Thurman Ave., said she is the owner of three dogs and is a regular customer of the store.

"It bums me out," she said. "I feel sad. It's nice to support another (independent) business."