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Top cats snap: Fur flies outside UK PM's home

Steve Back / Rex Features

British Prime Minister David Cameron's cat Larry and Chancellor George Osborne's cat Freya fight in Downing Street, London, on Tuesday.

LONDON - Downing Street, where the head of Britain's government resides right next door to the man who holds the nations' purse strings, has witnessed its fair share of spats over the years.

But the fur flew for real Tuesday when two cats from each official residence -- known colloquially as Number 10 and Number 11 -- traded paws in a brief bout of feline fury.

Larry, Prime Minister David Cameron's cat, was pictured taking a claw to the throat from Freya, Chancellor George Osborne's pet.

Witnesses said Larry quickly withdrew to the safety of his home, leaving Freya one-up in the cat-on-cat contest.

Read the story by NBC News' British partner ITV News

This is not the first time that Larry has let down the side since joining Downing Street from Battersea Dogs and Cats Home, an animal shelter in southwest London, almost two years ago.  He was brought in on the reputed strength of his mousing skills to deal with at least one rat seen scurrying past the door of Number 10. (Click here to see Number 10's official version on Storify).

But his career got off to a rocky start, drawing blood from a TV reporter.

Click here for more stories about Larry the cat  

To compound this first PR faux pas, it took Larry months to nail his first rodent victim, the Guardian reported.

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