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5 dogs, 5 US Presidents

These 5 presidents did have time for dogs

By laura Goldman From Care2

You’re probably aware that Donald Trump is the only president in over a century who does not have a pet in the White House. Apparently, he has never had a pet at all. During his February 11 rally in El Paso, Trump brought up this topic.

“I wouldn’t mind having one, honestly, but I don’t have any time, I don’t have any time,” he said. This does make sense. After all, most golf courses aren’t dog friendly, and a pet would only get in the way inside the room-sized golf simulator he had installed in the White House.

“How would I look walking a dog on the White House lawn?” Trump asked his supporters. “I don’t know, I don’t feel good. It feels a little phony to me.” He added that a lot of people have told him to get a dog because “it would be good politically,” but “that’s not the relationship I have with my people,” he said, whatever that means.

Someone in the crowd then shouted, “Obama!” This made Trump smile and say, yes, his predecessor, whose legacy he’s hell-bent on destroying, did have a dog. Obama wasn’t the only president who had plenty of time for a first dog in the White House and had no issue with walking or even (gasp!) picking up after them on the South Lawn. Here, in reverse chronological order, are just a few of the 30 presidents who gladly shared the White House with their dogs.


Not only did Barack Obama walk his family’s Portuguese water dogs, Bo and Sunny, on the South Lawn, but as he told schoolchildren in 2010, “Sometimes I run around with Bo, although … sometimes I have to scoop up his poop.”

Obviously he wasn’t too concerned about how he would look being a responsible dog owner.


In his memoir, Decision Points, George W. Bush also discusses picking up after Barney, one of the family’s two Scottish terriers. This was after the family had left the White House, but should still be noted. “There I was, the former president of the United States, with a plastic bag on my hand, picking up that which I had been dodging for the past eight years,” Bush wrote.

During their White House years, the Bush family also had a Scottish terrier named Miss Beazley as well as an English springer spaniel named Spot. She was the daughter of Millie, the first dog during the presidency of W’s dad (see below).


Neither Bill nor the Clinton who would one day receive 2.9 million more popular votesthan Trump had any problem whatsoever walking their chocolate Labrador Retriever, Buddy, on the South Lawn in 1998 — even in front of cameras for a photo opportunity.

President Clinton walking Buddy

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons


The first President Bush happily walked on the White House lawn with Millie, the family’s English springer spaniel, and her puppies. They kept one of the puppies, named Ranger, and gave another, Spot, to Bush’s son, George (see above).

Years later, people around the world were touched by how Bush’s service dog, Sully, looked as he curled up beside the casket of his person.

President George H.W. Bush with dogs

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons


Although Nancy’s holding the leash in the screenshot below, Ronald Reagan does not appear to care about how he looks on the White House lawn with Rex, their King Charles Cavalier spaniel.

The Reagans did, however, have an issue with their other dog, a Bouvier des Flandres sheepdog named Lucky, who wasn’t quite as fortunate as her name implied. When Lucky grew “from a ball of fluff” to “the size of a pony,” according to the first lady, the dog was sent to live at the Reagans’ ranch in California.

President Reagan walking dog

Photo credit: Smithsonian Channel/YouTube

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

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