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Presidents’ Day Pups

by Coach Lilly

Woohoo! It’s Presidents’ Day…at least that’s what my pawrents said. They also said that this weekend brings a remembrance of the service of my canine cousins and forefathers serving as FODUS: First Dog of the United States.

Since the beginning of the USA, a dog has proudly served nearly 75% (32 of 44) of our Presidents. From George Washington to Barack Obama, dogs have supported their owners in the oval office, lending the kind of advice and support only a canine can give.

FODUS breeds varied greatly from one Commander in Chief to the next. President Washington had three American Staghounds named Sweet Lips, Scentwell, and Vulcan, as well as three Black and Tan Coonhounds: Drunkard, Taster, Tipler, and Tipsy. Their unusual names make me think that they may have been given a bit more than water to quench their thirst!

The next few Presidents kept a variety of hunting and house-dogs. Theodore Roosevelt employed a very large staff of four-legged advisors during his administration. His esteemed canine cabinet included: Pete (Bull Terrier), Skip (Rat Terrier), Jack and Peter (Terriers), Blackjack (Manchester Terrier), Manchun (Pekingese), Rollo (Saint Bernard), Sailor Boy (Chesapeake Bay Retriever), and Gem and Susan (Unknown breeds).

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Following President Roosevelt, a diverse pack of dogs were chosen to aid the POTUS, with German Shephards being the most prevalent of all breeds. Also of note, the Presidents with the largest Canine Cabinets were Theodore Roosevelt, Calvin Coolidge, Herbert Hoover, Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush, who each employed the counsel of six or more dogs.

With 2016 being a political year, and Presidential elections around the corner, I hope whoever wins will be wise enough to appoint a few pups of their own. Me, I am not a political animal, so I just hope that the best human wins. If asked about my affiliation, I have to say, I am a proud member of the Puppy Party!

Until next time; Happy Holidays!

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