It’s President’s Day, otherwise known as Washington’s Birthday, and while most of you probably have the day off to celebrate our very first, First Man, we are taking the day to commemorate 20 of the most adorable First Dogs. From small to large, long-haired to short, pure-bred to mixed, all of these pooches have on thing in common: their masters were at one time or another the most powerful men in America.
1. George Washington: Our first President is known to have had ten hounds that went by the names of Mopsey, Taster, Cloe, Tipler, Forester, Captain, Lady Rover, Vulcan, Sweetlips and Searcher.
2. Abraham Lincoln: Honest Abe owned at least two dogs that we know of, named Fido and Jip. Below is Fido, posing happily for the camera.
3. Rutherford Hayes: Hayes had Spaniel companion named Duke during his presidency along with some other unconventional pets like cows and goats.
4. Benjamin Harrison: Dash, Harrison’s beloved dog, stands outside his very own not-so-white house, below.
5. Theodore Roosevelt: Teddy Roosevelt, a dog lover, had lots of dogs including a Pit Bull Terrier named Pete, a Chesapeake Retriever named Sailor Boy and a Terrier named Jack. It is known that pesky Pete stirred some international waters by ripping off the pants of a French Ambassador during a White House function.
6. Warren Harding: Harding is yet another dog-loving President of the United States. He had Laddie Boy, below, an Airedale Terrier, and a bull dog named Oh Boy. Laddie even had his own chair to sit in for cabinet meetings.
7. Calvin Coolidge: Coolidge had quite the long list of dogs including a sheep dog, an airedale terrier and white collies. Pictured below, he is walking with Rob Roy one of his white collies.
8. Herbert Hoover: The Police Dog, King Tut as seen in the picture below, is one of nine dogs that Hoover owned. He also had two fox terriers, a wolf hound, an eskimo dog and more.
9. Franklin Roosevelt: Fala, FDR’s favorite dog, was an adorable Scottish Terrier that served as his companion. Fala was treated like royalty and even got to star in an MGM film about the life of a dog in the White House. You can still see Fala beside FDR as part of the Franklin Delano Roosevelt memorial.
10. Harry Truman: Feller, the little pup you see below, was one Truman’s best friends though he also had an Irish Setter named Mike. This President was known to remark, “If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog.”
11. Dwight D. Eisenhower: Heidi, was Eisenhower’s beloved Weimaraner. She looks quite presidential!
12. John F. Kennedy: Another dog lover, JKF was the first President to request his dogs meet him at the Presidential helicopter when he landed. He had a Welsh Terrier, an Irish Wolfhound, a German Shepard, a Cocker Spaniel and some terriers, many of which are below with he and his picturesque family.
13. Lyndon B. Johnson: Johnson’s most famous dogs were Beagles named Him and Her. LBJ holds the paws of Him, below, and happily poses for the camera.
14. Richard Nixon: Nixon owned four dogs in all but is seen below with Checkers, an adorable, scruffy-looking Spaniel. He also received an Irish Setter from a staff member upon moving into the White House and named it King Timahoe after the little Irish Village his mother came from.
15. Gerald Ford: Ford and Liberty, his Golden Retriever, seem to have a close bond as she leans backward and smiles for the camera. She ended up giving birth to nine puppies while in the White House.
16. Jimmy Carter: Seen below is Carter’s daughter, Amy, and Grits, the mixed breed pooch. Grits was a gift for the little girl and loved by the whole family.
17. Ronald Reagan: Lucky, the Bouvier des Flandres, looms over Reagan in this photo and peers out the window. There is another famous image of Lucky dragging the President across the White House lawn in front of Margaret Thatcher. Reagan also had a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel named Rex.
18. Bill Clinton: Buddy was America’s top dog during Clinton’s presidency and was famously seen relieving himself on the White House carpet. This chocolate lab poses adorably and shows off his gleaming coat for his portrait, below.
19. George W. Bush: Below is English Springer Spaniel, Spot, galloping across the White House lawn with a tennis ball. Bush named him after Texas Ranger player Scott Fletcher and Spot is the only dog to have lived in the White House for two administrations.
20. Barack Obama: Of course, we can’t forget Bo Obama, our current First Dog and maybe the most adorable yet. He is a Portuguese Water Dog and probably one of the most photographed Presidential pups in history. Below he poses for his official portrait.
While all of the above dogs had famous and powerful owners, we’re sure they didn’t know it! We hope you are able to spend time with your own pooch today and maybe give him or her the Presidential treatment.
Main Image, 1. GW, 2. Lincoln, 3. Hayes, 4. Harrison, 5. Roosevelt, 6. Harding, 7. Coolidge, 8. Hoover, 9. FDR, 10. Truman, 11. Eisenhower, 12. Kennedy, 13. Johnson, 14. Nixon, 15. Ford, 16. Carter, 17. Reagan, 18. Clinton, 19. Bush, 20. Obama