Seal breaks into New Zealand marine biologist’s house, scaring away family cat

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A New Zealand family told Reuters on Sunday they were surprised to find a seal had broken into their house, scaring away the family’s cat and lounging on the couch.

When Jenn Ross returned home on Wednesday (August 17) morning, she initially thought the buckets tipped astray in the garage was the work of the family cat, Coco. She was not expecting the fur seal that was in the hallway instead.

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“I hear this flippity-flop along the hallway and it’s like, ‘oh, that would be a seal, I cannot believe that would’ve come in through there,” she told Reuters.

After waking up her children with the news that there was a seal, which they nicknamed ‘Oscar,’ downstairs, she called her husband, Phil Ross, who was at work at the time.

Mr. Ross, who works as a marine biologist, said it was ironic that he was not at home when the seal showed up.

“I try and make attempts to bring my family out to some cool places I get to work, but on this occasion work came home,” he said.

The family believes the seal followed their family cat, Coco, through two cat flaps into the house as she “made a dash to safety”. Coco was later found sheltering at their neighbour’s house, and is still reluctant to go downstairs where the seal was.

They said that whilst it is not uncommon for them to see seals around the area, as they only live a couple of hundred meters away from the shore, this was the first time they had heard of one entering a house.

The Department of Conservation ranger that captured the seal said he already had a busy morning with seal-related call outs, suspecting it was a result of recent bad weather in the country.

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