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Foreign Office goes on the defensive against No10 as it installs plastic 'riot shield' to stop Larry the cat from getting into building
Chief Mouser to the Cabinet found his way into the Foreign Office blockedHe and George Osborne's cat Freya are regular visitors to the buildingBut staff with allergies had complained about their presence
William Hague came to their aid and ordered the removal of the barrier
19:01 GMT, 21 February 2013
20:03 GMT, 21 February 2013
As Chief Mouser to the Cabinet, Larry is used to having his run of Downing Street.
So he was understandably more than a little perturbed today when he found one of his favourite prowling routes blocked by a plastic shield.
It appears the Foreign Office, which installed the clear cover, has gone to extreme lengths to stop the No10 employee from snooping around.
On the defensive: The Foreign Office have gone to extreme lengths to stop Larry the cat from getting in the building and installed a plastic shield over the iron rail to prevent his regular visits
Political animal: The Chief Mouser was not happy after finding his route blocked on Thursday morning
Larry is often seen squeezing through the intricate iron rail to get past security at the Foreign Office gate opposite No10.
And he and George Osborne's cat Freya are known to enjoy their regular visits to the building.
But their trips over the road looked to have been brought to an abrupt halt after complaints were made by staff with allergies to cats.
However, a last minute intervention from a senior political figure seems to have given the cats a reprieve.
Foreign Secretary William Hague today asked for the cat-proof barrier be taken down.
Larry and George Osborne's cat Freya are regular visitors to the Foreign Office but complaints had been made about their presence by staff, including some who are allergic to cats
The Foreign Office confirmed today that it is reviewing whether the barriers were an 'appropriate' response to the complaints.
A Foreign Office spokesman said: 'Freya and Larry visit the Foreign Office a lot and they seem to like the building.
'The vast majority of our staff enjoy seeing them. Some including those allergic to cats have raised concerns.
'Measures were taken to address these concerns. Whether these measures were appropriate to the concerns is under active review.
'And the Foreign Secretary has asked that the cat proof barrier be removed immediately.'
Cat fight: Tensions have run high in the past between Larry and Freya, who bump into each other at No10
The barrier is the latest set-back in Larry's career as Chief Mouser.
Larry was brought in to the corridors of power in February 2011 to deal with the rodent problem in Downing Street.
However, it took him 18 months to record his first confirmed kill and he was subjected to accusations of 'chillaxing' after pictures emerged of him lying in Downing Street and being petted by politicians and police officers.
Things took another downward turn when Freya arrived and tensions came to a head during a very public cat fight in October.