A Raccoon in the White House? Get to Know Your Presidential Pets
The newest pet-loving president, Joe Biden, has introduced his furry pack—two German Shepherds—to the White House. They’ve made an enormous impression with followers and foes alike; with rumors of a possible cat becoming a member of the combination, we at Rover—naturally—have turned our ideas to presidential pets.
As it seems, practically all U.S. presidents have had pets. And whereas canine are inclined to steal the present, receiving fan mail and generally even accompanying POTUS in greeting dignitaries, many animals have lived within the White House, out of your common ol’ canine and cats to birds, horses, and different, extra unique pets. Some have made their marks on our reminiscences and in media, whereas others entertained behind the scenes.
And whereas there was no presidential pet within the Trump White House, we’d be remiss if we didn’t shout out his Vice President who greater than made up for it as pet guardian to a couple animals: During their tenure, Mike Pence and his household welcomed an Aussie pet, Harley, and grey kitten, Hazel, into their residence. Harley and Hazel joined Pickle the cat and Marlon Bundo the rabbit (who has his personal Insta).
Presidential Pets, from George Washington to Joe Biden
From the distinguished to the scene-stealing to the plain outdated wacky, we’re highlighting a few of the presidential pets which have roamed the White House grounds.
President George Washington’s (Drunk?) Dogs
Good ol’ George Washington, the unique president, is alleged to have been not solely the daddy of America (effectively, that half’s a reality), however the father to greater than 30 canine, too. The most memorable of the mixed-breed pack? A few his hounds named Drunkard, Taster, Tipler, and Tipsy. Hmm, we’re sensing a theme right here…
President Thomas Jefferson’s—and Madison’s—Pet Birds
According to Audubon’s “A Brief History of President-Bird Companionship,” Thomas Jefferson owned a number of mockingbirds all through his life. His chook love impressed the spouse of his successor, James Madison. Dolley Madison introduced a macaw named Polly to the White House, who, based on the Presidential Pet Museum, “would typically perch on her shoulder as she went about her day by day life. She would typically greet folks within the Reception Room on the White House along with her parrot, which she used as a dialog starter for guests who have been too timid to spark up dialog first.”
Abraham Lincoln’s Photogenic Presidential Pet
Abraham Lincoln’s trusty companion, Fido—game-winning trivia query alert!—was the primary presidential canine to be photographed. Unfortunately, he was left in Illinois earlier than the Lincolns made the transfer to Washington—Lincoln was anxious the transfer would stress Fido. In D.C., he acquired one other canine, Jip, who not often left son Tad’s aspect.
It didn’t finish there, as Lincoln was an avid animal lover: Goats, Nanny and Nanko, appeared to have free rein in and across the White House; the household additionally had cats, rabbits, and some different canine. Oh yeah, the custom of pardoning the presidential turkey began with Lincoln, too—after his son, Tad, bonded with, and named, the stay turkey supposed for the 1863 Christmas feast.
President Andrew Jackson’s Foul (Fowl?)-Mouthed Pet Bird
At his funeral, Poll the parrot, who Jackson had allegedly taught to swear, stole the present by squawking and letting fly a number of selection phrases, based on attendees.
Teddy Roosevelt’s Presidential Pet Menagerie
Like Calvin Coolidge, Teddy Roosevelt introduced many animals to the White House, together with horses, canine, a pair of kangaroo rats that frolicked within the kids’s pockets, a one-legged rooster, and Eli Yale, a Hyacinth macaw who was a favourite of son Theodore Roosevelt, Jr. Teddy himself was a very avid chook lover and stored a guidelines of birds he noticed on White House grounds.
Calvin Coolidge’s Presidential Pet…Raccoon?!
Calvin Coolidge and his spouse Grace have been pet dad and mom to a veritable menagerie, together with a dozen canine, one in every of which—their white collie Prudence Prim, to be actual—was famously photographed sporting an Easter bonnet on the annual White House Easter Egg Roll. Fun reality: The couple was additionally pet dad and mom to a few cats, birds, a pair of raccoons, a donkey, and even a bobcat who was gifted to them by a political group. It was reluctantly accepted for a quick time by the couple, who finally gave him to a close-by zoo.
President Herbert Hoover’s Dog Begged for Votes
President Herbert Hoover may as effectively have been President King Tut the Belgian Shepherd—his canine did assist him earn the presidency, in any case. An autographed photograph of Hoover and King Tut “begging” for votes circulated round America, and it labored! The First Family moved into the White House, and a handful of canine quickly adopted—together with a uncommon Irish Wolfhound.
John F. Kennedy’s Dog and Pony Show
John F. Kennedy was allergic to canine, however that didn’t cease “America’s Most Royal Family” from housing 9 of ‘em. The iconic clan had a pair of parakeets and stored a pony, too. His identify? Macaroni. Isn’t that simply Yankee Doodle dandy?
President Lyndon B. Johnson’s Perfect Pet Pair
Lyndon B. Johnson beloved canine and referred to as a brother and sister pair of his floppy-eared Beagles Him and Her (he was additionally liable for naming their dad: Beagle). Upon shifting to the White House in 1963, he had the White House doghouse (there’s a White House doghouse?!) redesigned and enlarged. That well-known ear-pulling photograph did develop into a sizzling matter with offended canine lovers who registered their disapproval, and he apologized publicly. But by all accounts, they have been in any other case spoiled, even visiting with heads of state. The Beagles romped with two different canine, a Collie named Blanco and a mutt named Yuki.
President Richard Nixon’s Heartwarming Pet Dogs
A cocker spaniel named Checkers helped ease the hardened hearts of America in the course of the 1952 vice-presidential election drama Richard Nixon confronted. While he was president? It was a Yorkshire Terrier named Pasha, a French Poodle named Vicky, and an Irish Setter named King Timahoe that strolled the White House grounds with him. Unfortunately, these pets weren’t fairly cute sufficient to easy over that entire Watergate factor.
President Gerald Ford’s Pet Lady Liberty
Gerald Ford was the proud presidential pet guardian of a golden retriever named Liberty, together with one in every of her puppies, Misty, one other canine named Lucky, and Shan, the Siamese cat. In reality, Liberty gave start within the White House (with a whelping field constructed for her by White House carpenters) to 9 puppies. Photos of the puppies have been in excessive demand—Betty Ford was protecting and didn’t permit images till they have been two months outdated—and every request was “signed” by a paw print from Liberty herself.
President Ronald Reagan’s Lucky Dogs
Ah, to be a Ronald Reagan canine. The Reagans have been proud pet dad and mom to Lucky and Rex, each of whom lived on the White House. Lucky, a Bouvier des Flandres, grew to be quite massive and boisterous—and just a little overwhelming for the White House, so throughout Reagan’s second time period, they despatched Lucky to stay on the Reagans’ ranch, the place they typically went to spend downtime.
The Clintons’ Pet Dog and Cat
First got here Socks the cat, then, throughout Bill Clinton’s second presidential time period got here Buddy the Chocolate Lab. Socks and Buddy reportedly had a contentious relationship, however Buddy’s outgoing character impressed fan golf equipment and web sites, and Hillary talked in regards to the letters each presidential pets obtained from children in a e book: Dear Socks, Dear Buddy: Kids’ Letters to the First Pets.
President George W. Bush’s Barneycam
George W. Bush and Laura had fairly a number of pets: Spot, who got here from his dad’s canine Millie (who was additionally within the White House throughout George H.W. Bush’s presidential time period), two notorious Scottish Terriers Barney and Miss Beazley, in addition to India, a kitty who got here with them to the White House (and died simply earlier than Barack Obama took workplace). But Bush is liable for perhaps the best factor that ever occurred to the web: The “Barneycam,” movies that chronicled what a day within the life because the Bush canine was actually like.
The Obamas’ Hypoallergenic Presidential Pets
Bo the Portuguese Water Obama canine was chosen for his hypoallergenic coat because of Barack Obama’s daughter Malia’s allergy symptoms—however due to the household’s love for shelter canine, they donated to the Washington Humane Society once they acquired Bo. Aww! The subsequent canine to hitch this presidential pack? Sunny!
President Joe Biden’s German Shepherd Love
President Joe Biden has had German Shepherds a lot of his life, so it was inevitable that he’d carry a pair to the White House. First got here Champ in 2008 when Biden took workplace as vp—he grew to become iconic, with the Bidens handing out plush likenesses of Champ to kids who have been victims of floods or pure disasters. More lately, the Bidens added Major (born in 2018) to their household. Major has the excellence of being the primary shelter pet to return to the White House. And whereas Champ is an outdated professional to the White House scene, Major’s adjustment into his new residence has garnered a number of unlucky headlines; nonetheless, each canine have a great deal of followers and some candy fan-created social media accounts following their day by day routines.
More Presidential Pets
That’s simply the tip of the presidential pet iceberg—with practically 240 years of presidents underneath America’s belt, a lot of canine, cats, birds, and extra have served as loving and dependable companions to our nation’s leaders. And after all, we didn’t even record all the aforementioned presidents’ canine as a result of there have been that many, which begs the query: Do you’ve gotten a favourite presidential pooch?