Right here, kitty: Bidens welcome cat named Willow to White Home

WASHINGTON (AP) — For the primary time in additional than a dozen years, a cat resides on the White Home.

Her identify is Willow, and he or she’s a 2-year-old, green-eyed, grey and white farm cat from Pennsylvania, who first caught the attention of first girl Jill Biden out on the marketing campaign path.

“Willow is settling into the White Home together with her favourite toys, treats, and loads of room to scent and discover,” mentioned Michael LaRosa, the primary girl’s spokesperson.

Jill Biden had mentioned after her husband, Joe Biden, was elected in November 2020 that they might bring a kitty to the White House, however months handed with out a sighting or phrase of when she would arrive. Then final month, the White Home mentioned the cat would are available in January.

Willow is known as after the primary girl’s hometown of Willow Grove, Pennsylvania.

The short-haired tabby made fairly an impression on Jill Biden after she jumped up on stage and interrupted her remarks throughout a 2020 marketing campaign cease in Pennsylvania, LaRosa mentioned.

“Seeing their fast bond, the proprietor of the farm knew that Willow belonged with Dr. Biden,” he mentioned. The proprietor gave the primary girl the cat, who was refrained from the White Home till the time was proper to maneuver her and her litter field in.

The White Home has been with out a feline resident since India, President George W. Bush’s cat, who died on the mansion in January 2009, simply earlier than the top of his time period. Earlier than that, President Invoice Clinton had his cat, Socks, on the White Home, too.

Stacy Cordery, who teaches historical past and management at Dickinson State College, mentioned welcoming a pet is at all times a cheerful time for any household, and that canine and cat possession might assist increase the Bidens’ public attraction at a time of political hassle for the president.

Cordery, who has written books about President Theodore Roosevelt and his household, famous the distinction between Biden and his fast predecessor, Donald Trump, who didn’t have a pet on the White Home throughout his presidency.

“I do suppose that a part of their purpose is to make the White Home really feel extra approachable,” Cordery mentioned of the Bidens.

They’ve owned cats prior to now, however not for the reason that dying of their kitty Daisy.

Willow joins Commander, a German shepherd pet Joe Biden launched in December as a birthday present from the president’s brother James Biden and his spouse, Sara.

White Home press secretary Jen Psaki teased that Willow might present up sometime at considered one of her day by day briefings.

“She has a standing invitation. It could be purrrfect,” Psaki tweeted, including #COTUS — which stands for “Cat of the USA.”

The Bidens had two different German shepherds, Champ and Main, on the White Home earlier than Commander.

However Main, a 3-year-old rescue canine, began behaving aggressively after he arrived in January 2021, together with a pair of biting incidents. The White Home had mentioned Main was nonetheless adjusting to his new dwelling, and he was despatched again to the Bidens’ Delaware dwelling for coaching.

The Bidens, after consulting with canine trainers, animal behaviorists and veterinarians, determined to comply with the consultants’ collective advice and ship Main to dwell in a quieter surroundings with household pals, LaRosa mentioned final month.

Champ died in June at age 13.


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