Palmerston the Foreign Office cat at Downing Street in London. Palmerston has surpassed fellow Downing Street cat, Larry, by catching at least 27 mice since he arrived last year. Photo by Andy Rain/EPA
Sept. 5 (UPI) -- The British government's longtime mouse-hunting cat Larry's position is being threatened by his rival Palmerston.
The Foreign Office cat Palmerston has placed pressure on Downing Street's resident mouser, Larry, after a document released under Freedom of Information laws stated he killed at least 27 mice since coming to the office last year.
Foreign Office officials say Palmerston's count is likely much higher, while Larry was recently involved in a controversy after he was caught sparing a mouse's life.
"The FCO does not keep an accurate figure for the amount of mice caught by Palmerston," the office said. "This figure is likely to be much higher as these are only reported sightings."
Palmerston, the black and white cat named after two-time prime minister Viscount Palmerston, was adopted from Battersea Dogs and Cats Home by the Foreign Office from in 2016.
There have been unconfirmed reports of a feud between Palmerston and his predecessor Larry since the new cats arrival.
While Palmerston has impressed with his mouse hunting skills, Larry has been ridiculed for sleeping on his post and letting mice escape with their lives.
The Freedom of Information report also revealed that Palmerston is exclusively fed Whiskas cat food and the bills for his care are paid voluntarily by office staff.