When President-elect Obama, gave his acceptance speech, the night he won the election, he said to his children, that they would be taking the puppy that they wanted, to the White House with them. We therefore did a search, to find out what pets, some of the past presidents have had in their White Houses. There have been over 400 pets in the White House, over time. Our current President, Mr. Bush, has two dogs, Barney and Spot. Spot was born in the White House, and is the offspring of Millie, who is owned by the President’s mother. Benjamin Harrison had a pet goat, as reported recently, on CNN’s Anderson Cooper’s 360, news program.
President Calvin Coolidge had a pet racoon named “His Whiskers,” President Abraham Lincoln, had a beloved dog, who did not stay at the White House, because the crowds at the official residence, made him very nervous, so the dog stayed at the President’s Illinois address. When President Lincoln was shot, the dog pined for his master, and died the next year. A pet pony in Theodore Roosevelt’s White House, was taken by one son, up on the White House elevator, to visit his brother who had measles.
President Dwight Eisenhower’s grandchildren, Susan and David, buried their pet parakeets, Gabby and High Glory, in the Rose Garden, and marked their graves. President Franklin Roosevelt had a pet dog, a Scottish Terrier named Fala. Thomas Jefferson’s pet mocking bird, was kept in a cage, but was allowed to fly around in the White House.
President John F. Kennedy’s daughter Caroline, had a horse named Macoroni, which we used to see, in pictures, many times, during the short term of her father. President Lyndon Johnson had two Beagels, at the White House, some of us remember, the picture of Mr. Johnson, as he picked one of the dogs up by its ears, which caused an outcry by many dog lovers and others. The two Beagels were named “His” and “Hers.” Today it was reported, that President Bush’s dog Barney, bit one of the reporters, who showed up for the President’s announcement, regarding the end of his term.
Many Presidents have enjoyed their pets, while running the country. The pets, be they dogs, racoons or birds, probably reduced some of the stress which was certainly a part of every day affairs, within the presidential residence. As someone said, if you want a friend in Washington, D. C., get a dog.
( Some information obtained from an internet “Test on White House Pets”)