For billions around the globe — and Willow the White House cat — it’s the most wonderful time of the year.
While President Joe Biden and his family have resided at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue for nearly two years now, Willow will be enjoying her very first Christmas at the White House next week. In an endearing video posted Friday, the two-year-old cat is seen perusing the decorated grounds.
“Willow can’t get enough of her first Christmas at the White House with @flotus,” First Lady Dr. Jill Biden captioned the Instagram post depicting her and the furry feline.
The charming footage revealed festive decorations throughout the East Colonnade, which held semi-lifelike mockups of Willow and Commander the dog welcoming guests, according to People. In the Vermeil Room, books and pet-themed decorations lined the trees.
While Christmas might be new for Willow, Commander joined the White House as a puppy last December after the Biden family dog, Champ, died in June 2021, according to Insider. He’s since appeared at the 2022 Puppy Bowl XVIII with the first lady ahead of the Super Bowl.
“What’s so wonderful about having pets is they bring us unconditional love, joy, and comfort every day,” said Dr. Jill Biden in a Discovery Press video posted before the February event. “All of us are wishing you a very happy Valentine’s Day.”
Willow was originally brought home from Pennsylvania and essentially replaced Champ after his death at 13, according to Insider. However, Biden told NBC’s “Today” show in April 2021 that Willow was “waiting in the wings” while her dogs were acclimating to cats.
“Willow made quite an impression on Dr. Biden in 2020 when she jumped on the stage and interrupted her remarks during a campaign stop,” Michael LaRosa, Biden’s spokesman, told The New York Times. “…the owner of the farm knew that Willow belonged with Dr. Biden.”
The last cat to call the White House home was a feline named Sacks, belonging to George W. Bush’s family. After two cat-less presidential terms by Barack Obama and Donald Trump, the so-called “Executive Mansion” is once again riddled with echoing purrs.