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“The Bidens are excited to welcome their new cat, Willow, to the White House!” the first lady’s press secretary, Michael LaRosa, said Friday.
Willow, who the first lady named after her hometown, Willow Grove, Pa., is two years old and has grey and white stripes. LaRosa said the cat is a “short-haired Tabby.”
“A farm cat from Pennsylvania, Willow made quite an impression on Dr. Biden in 2020 when she jumped up on the stage and interrupted her remarks during a campaign stop,” LaRosa said. “Seeing their immediate bond, the owner of the farm knew that Willow belonged with Dr. Biden.”
LaRosa added that Willow is “settling into the White House with her favorite toys, treats, and plenty of room to smell and explore.”
The news of Willow joining the First family at the White House comes just a month after the president and first lady welcomed their German Shepherd Puppy, Commander. At the time, the White House previewed that a cat would arrive in January.
The Bidens received Commander in December as a birthday gift from the president’s brother James Biden and sister-in-law Sara Biden, according to first lady Jill Biden’s office. The dog, which was born on Sept. 1, will go by the name Commander.
Upon Commander’s arrival, the White House announced that the Bidens’ German shepherd, Major, would be re-homed with family friends. The Bidens made the decision to move Major after consulting with dog trainers, animal behaviorists and veterinarians, who said the dog would benefit from a quieter environment.
Major had been a source of controversy for the White House after being involved in several biting incidents since Biden took office, including a string of eight days in a row in which Major bit a Secret Service agent. At least one White House visitor was also bitten by Major, in March, with White House press secretary Jen Psaki saying the dog “was surprised by an unfamiliar person and reacted in a way that resulted in a minor injury to the individual.”
But the White House said Major departing was not due to a new or specific incident, saying the decision was made after months of deliberation.
Meanwhile, when asked about the arrival of a potential White House cat, White House press secretary Jen Psaki joked she would make the announcement before a bad news day.
“I’ve been joking, although maybe it might be true, that we’re waiting for a bad news day for that to come out,” Psaki said of the possibility of a White House cat earlier this year. “If you see a tail wagging coming out of the briefing room, you’ll know something bad is about to happen.”
Fox News’ Sarah Tobianski, Jacqui Heinrich and Michael Lee contributed to this report.