Portland Couple Say They’ll Keep the Cat They Caled 911 On

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The Portland, Oregon couple who called the cops on their cat on Sunday, saying they’d barricaded themselves in the bedroom because the cat had gone berserk and attacked them, have been in the spotlight since the story grabbed international headlines.

Many news stories treated the case as a sideshow, but the details of the incident made many question the cat’s safety and whether he should stay in the home.

Lux is a 22 pond Himalayan who Teresa Barker says she’s had since he was a kitten. Teresa Barker and Lee Palmer’s baby pulled Lux’s tail, prompting Lux to swat back. Lee Palmer admitted on his 911 call to police that he kicked the cat, and said the cat then went out of control in attack mode, prompting the family to lock themselves away from him and call for help.

“He attacked our baby, so we got a bit of adrenalin rush,” Barker said of the incident. “If you had a cat and you had a baby… I assure you, you’d do the same thing. We were worried about the baby; we could’ve cared less how the cat felt.”

Fortunately for Lux, police didn’t take him away and have him killed over the incident. He remains in the home.

After the story spread across media outlets, offers came in to the couple, to provide therapy for Lux or to give him a home where he wouldn’t be kicked and have his tail pulled. Media outlets also came knocking on the couple’s door, and they’ve given some interviews.

The Oregonian followed up on the story this afternoon.

Barker’s response when asked about the offers to adopt Lux was this: “It’s not going to happen — I’m not getting rid of my cat right now,” she said. “I’ve raised him since he was a baby … we’re taking different precautions.”

She says she and Palmer are keeping Lux and the baby away from one another for the time being, and she thinks the cat will eventually come out from under the bed, where he took refuge.

“The cat never attacked the baby until he pulled on his tail,’’ Barker said. “The baby runs after the kitty and goes ‘ki-ki’ and tries to grab the kitty. He does the same with the dog. The only difference is the cat attacks and the dog doesn’t.

“We gotta watch the cat around the baby. Period,” she said.

Read the full update to the story in The Oregonian, and see their video report from this afternoon:



5 thoughts on “Portland Couple Say They’ll Keep the Cat They Caled 911 On”

  1. Poor Lux. He was probably the ‘baby’ until the human baby came along. Now he’s just in the way. He needs to go live with people who can show him some love, not kicks and tail pulling.

  2. What’s so ridiculous is they haven’t learned their lesson since they dont seem to see the need to watch the dog with the child. People dont seem to get that animals are not like people. You have to watch ALL animals closely when with a baby. Instinct is very strong and takes over sometimes. Truth is there are no recorded deaths from cats but deaths from dogs is second only to bees.

    All animals small children should be watched VERY closely with ALL animals. I dont care how sweet your little furbaby is, it’s an ANIMAL. It’s animal instincts can take over when it is in pain and children will inflict pain on animals. I’ve seen cats with broken tails from kids pulling them.

    There are different forms of aggression in cats. One of them is learned aggression and is usually seen in animals that are exposed to children improperly. They are hurt by the child. They instinctively lash out. The child runs away. The cat learns to lash out to stop small humans from bothering it. I never let small children interact with my cats without me having one of them in my control.

  3. You’re half right, but I disagree. If you must keep a pet in another room to keep it away from a family member (no matter what age), then 1) you’re not teaching the family member how to interact with the pets, and 2) you shouldn’t have pets.

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