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Monday, February 28, 2011

Napcatcher rather than ratcatcher: Larry the Downing Street cat shows 'no interest' in going after the rodents


Napcatcher: Photographers had to wait 45 minutes to meet the new recruit when he arrived - because he was asleep

Larry the Downing Street cat may have been brought in to catch the rats but he has spent his days curled up asleep, it has been claimed.

The tabby was expected to go chasing after the rodents who have been seen scuttling down the street during television reports - but he's shown no interest in going after them.

Within hours of arriving at No 10 he had courted controversy by taking a swipe at ITV News reporter Lucy Manning when they tried to get him to pose for an item.

And he kept waiting reporters and photographers waiting for 45 when he was unveiled as the new pet because he was asleep.

The cat has also apparently covered the Prime Minister's suits with fur and has dug his claws in when sat on members of staff.

He's got a long way to go until he has the fierce reputation of Harry - Downing Street's first official moggy who arrived when Margaret Thatcher was Prime Minister.

The animal - who also served under Thatcher and Blair - acquired a fearsome reputation after being falsely accused of killing a family of robins in the garden.
He was known to energetically catch the rats.

Despite Larry's failure to deal with the pest problem, Downing Street's newest resident has quickly become popular among the staff.

A source told the Independent on Sunday: 'He has shown no interest in the many mice in Downing Street. There's a distinct lack of a killer instinct.'

Taking over the cabinet: Larry wanders across the table in the Cabinet Room at No 10

Rat catcher: Larry was brought in to get the Downing Street rat which appeared in Lucy Manning's report

The four-year-old cat arrived from Battersea Dogs and Cats home three weeks ago has apparently made several bids for freedom.

His former keepers at the rescue centre have recommended that he is not let out for at least three weeks until he becomes fully acclimatised to his new surroundings.
But as David Cameron posed on the steps outside with Kevin Spacey, Larry made a bid for freedom.

In between his frequent naps, the cat dines out not on taxpayer-funded meals - but dishes paid for by the Prime Minister's own staff.
With George Osborne clamping down on public spending, there is no room for a pet paid for by the public in No 10.

He arrived on February 15 - just days after a spokesman said on January 24 that there were 'no plans' for a cat to move in.

Arrival: Larry is carried in to No 10 for the first time earlier this month

The four-year-old tabby has apparently shown no interest in going after the rodents in Downing Street

source: dailymail


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