One of the world’s most powerful cats is heading for retirement four years after being adopted by the U.K.’s foreign office. Palmerston the cat has met ambassadors from across the world in his service as Chief Mouser at one of the most senior government offices and said he wanted to “enjoy some me time.”
At the end of August this year, the Foreign Office’s one and only @diplomog will be standing down in his post as Chief Mouser to begin a new life as a country cat.
We'll all miss him paw-fully, but wish him a purr-fect retirement 😺 pic.twitter.com/v5lZurqHE7
— Foreign Office 🇬🇧 (@foreignoffice) August 7, 2020
But, in a letter of resignation on Friday, he said he has set up a parallel network of “diplocats and diplodogs” who will continue his work. He leaves behind political pet heavyweights Larry the cat and Dilyn the dog, both living with Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Downing Street.
Dilyn, adopted by Johnson and fiancée Carrie Symonds, featured recently in the prime minister’s promotional video urging British people to lose weight. Larry, meanwhile, is often seen on TV news broadcasts as he hangs out by the iconic black door to Number 10.
In the U.S., President Donald Trump is thought to be the first president since the 11th President James K. Polk to not have a White House pet. President Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama had a Portuguese water dog throughout his tenure, named Bo.
“I hope that I have done you proud in putting the U.K.’s best foot, or paw, forward in each interaction,” Palmerston the cat wrote in his letter of resignation — signed with a paw print.
❗️Important news❗️ pic.twitter.com/PTEun74QYA
— Palmerston (@DiploMog) August 7, 2020
Sir Simon McDonald, the foreign office’s permanent secretary, said Palmerston would be missed, but “he’s enjoyed lockdown life in countryside so much, he’s decided to stay.” Palmerston the cat said: “Although I am ending my formal role here, I will always be an ambassador for the U.K.”