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The Mysterious History of the White House Cats: From Lincoln to Today!

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91659 the mysterious history of the white house cats from lincoln to today

The Mysterious History of the White House Cats: From Lincoln to Today!

2. How has the role of the White House cat changed throughout history?

The Mysterious History of the White House Cats: From Lincoln to Today!

We often hear about the first families of the United States, and of the presidents that have led the nation. But the White House has been the home of countless pets as well as families over the years and cats have been a significant part of that history. So what’s the mysterious story behind the White House cats?

The Feline First Family: Abigail Adams’ Cat

The first known White House cat belonged to Abigail Adams, who was the second First Lady of the United States and the wife of President John Adams. This white cat and her kittens were often found around the White House in their day.

The Cat of President Lincoln

The cat of President Abraham Lincoln had a particularly strange story. Allegedly, Lincoln brought the cat with him to the White House as a gift to his young son, Tad. The cat was named Tabby and, as the story goes, was a beloved pet of the Lincoln family.

The Garfield Cat: White House Tiger

President Garfield’s cat was a more interesting pet than the ones before him. He was a tiger cub from Mexico named “Veto”, who was brought to the White House as a gift from Mexico’s then-ruling dictator Porfirio Diaz. Veto was a wild pet who enjoyed freedom inside the White House and the surrounding grounds.

The Cat Resurgence of the 20th Century

Cats didn’t really become popular again in the White House until the early 20th century. President Theodore Roosevelt’s family of cats included one he gave to his daughter, a Maltese named Mike who, it is said, even attended formal White House functions.

The White House Cat of Today

The White House cat of today is the Obama family’s pet, Bo. Bo is a Portuguese Water Dog that was adopted into the Obama family in 2009, and he has been a beloved pet ever since.

The Mysterious Story Behind White House Cats

Whether they were given as a gift by foreign leaders, adopted by presidents, or simply considered part of the family, cats have been a vital part of the White House story over the past two centuries. From Abigail Adams’ white cat to Bo, the Obama family’s Portuguese Water Dog, the intriguing story behind the White House cats continues to live on.


The mysterious history of the White House cats is one that continues to intrigue us. From Abigail Adams to the Obama family, cats have been a beloved part of many presidential families over the years. Cats have been a special part of White House history, no matter the world-famous pet that accompanied each generation.

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