From the police station car park to Instagram, the amazing story of “Dixteen”, the police cat

Instead of the warm hoods of the police cars she first squatted in the yard, she now prefers the hum of copy machines. It’s been more than a year since Seventeen, a young wandering tabby cat, put his first paw in the parking lot of the Albi police station (Tarn). Shy at first, a few bowls of water and croquettes placed here and there ended up luring her. She attempted a foray. “And now when he happens to put his nose outside, it doesn’t last more than three minutes,” says V., one of the police officers from the night squad, who Seventeen keeps company – unless it’s the other way around – when the animation falls back to the floors.

During the day, the cat has a penchant for the flagrant delicto office, where an officer is not stingy with treats. The “Queen” has taken up residence, wanders around the building, toasts over the closet. At the end of 2021, when she landed, the police searched the posters and the missing persons notices on the posts. After a few weeks, V. and two of her colleagues took her to a vet to find out if she was chipped. It wasn’t, even though she had been sterilized. “No one ever recognized her or claimed her,” says one of her guardian angels. Not even since the opening of his Instagram account, which passed the milestone of 2,500 followers with the new year. In their spare time driven up by the three officials, with the approval of their superiors, he brought Seventeen into the ranks of the police’s furry mascots, like Pirate, the police cat from a police station in Seine-et-Marne or Mayreau, adopted by gendarmes. A celebrity who served him a few Christmas packages, toys or refined pies left at the reception.

An effect on some suspects

But Dix-sept, who keeps his small character and does not always behave like a plushie, has the talent not only to give advice on prevention and to entertain netizens who love cute cats with his falls from the top of cabinets or his attempts on that leave in intervention. Ella also has the gift of “placing the people” in her little universe. “After interventions that were difficult to handle. We go home, we discuss among ourselves, and then she comes, she does three stupid things. It comforts us, it makes us feel good,” says V.

Seventeen also has the ability to point his nose to good effect at the youth team’s premises, sometimes comforting victims by accepting pets. And since “she doesn’t have a filter”, she can’t tell the difference between good and bad. It therefore happens that his impromptu visit to an office reduces the pressure on the defendants. “It relaxes the guys on the edge”, notes V. The policeman has looked in vain, the unusual presence of this fur ball has never generated “only positive feedback”.

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