President Bill Clinton with Socks the Cat perched on his shoulder. March 7, 1995.
President Bill Clinton with Socks the Cat perched on his shoulder. March 7, 1995. Photography by Everett Collection Historical / Alamy Stock Photo.

Meet 4 Cats That Have Called the White House Home

India, Socks, Misty Malarky Ying Yang — these are some of our esteemed presidential cats. Let's look at our presidents' cats in honor of #PresidentsDay.
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Next to dogs, cats are among the most popular pets in the United States, so it’s no surprise that the White House has been home to more than a couple feline friends. We think presidents should go one step further and include their cats as important advisors, but hey, we’re not the ones writing the rules. If cats could be elected president, there would be mandatory nap time, infinitely full food dishes, and catnip would be legal. Since cats can’t be president, we’ll settle for reviewing our past presidents’ cats. Here are some of our favorites:

1. Jimmy Carter: Misty Malarky Ying Yang

First daughter Amy Carter with her Siamese cat Misty Malarky Ying Yang.
First daughter Amy Carter with her Siamese cat Misty Malarky Ying Yang. Ca. 1978. Photography by Everett Collection Inc / Alamy Stock Photo.

Jimmy Carter’s daughter Amy’s cat, a Siamese named Misty Malarky Ying Yang, roamed the White House.

2. George W. Bush: India “Willie” Bush

India “Willie” Bush took up occupancy of the White House during George W. Bush’s administration. India, an all-black kitty, was acquired at the request of the Bush daughters when they were nine-years-olds, but once the young women went off to college, the cat went into the care of Bush and his wife, Laura. Not a problem, since that meant India got free range of the White House once Bush was elected to office.

3. Bill Clinton: Socks

Adopted during Bill Clinton’s administration, Socks the cat never got along with Buddy, Clinton’s chocolate Lab, and the two were relegated to separate quarters of the White House. An animated version of Socks guided children on White House tours. Due to escalating conflict between Socks and Buddy, Socks got to remain in the White House after the Clintons moved out.

4. Gerald Ford: Shan

Along with Gerald Ford’s Golden Retriever Liberty, Shan, a Siamese cat, kept the presidential family company. The cat would curl up with daughter Susan Ford at night.

Featured photo: President Bill Clinton with Socks the Cat perched on his shoulder. March 7, 1995. Photography by Everett Collection Historical / Alamy Stock Photo.

This post was originally published in 2015.

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7 thoughts on “Meet 4 Cats That Have Called the White House Home”

  1. Pingback: 10 Facts About Tuxedo Cats | Areyoupop

  2. Pingback: 10 Info About Tuxedo Cats – Cute funny cat kitten pictures videos

  3. On Female Tabby Cats:
    We had a female tabby, named Kitteney. She only lived for 6 years. She had a bladder problem.
    During that time, she was the sweetest cat. Loved to lay in-between my legs. I miss her.

  4. Several years ago a tv channel did a story on each president, once a week. When they showed the house, live, that the Clinton’s lived in before becoming president, a cat that looked like Socks walked up and jumped on the mailbox and laid down. This wasn’t planned and everyone was pleasantly surprised to see this happen. It was awesome. Did anyone else see this? Sometimes now they run parts of the series but they never show the intimate scenes like this. Very sad.

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