By Emily Heil and Elizabeth Brotherton
Roll Call Staff
A Dogged Fight for Power. Forget bailout money — the most divisive issue in town might just be the kind of dog that will get the job of first pet.
And now one breed has its own lobbyist.
Washingtonian Greg Nelson launched the Web site Labradoodlesforobama.com after President-elect Barack Obama (D) confirmed on “This Week With George Stephanopoulos” that his family had narrowed down their choice of family dog to a Labradoodle or Portuguese water dog.
Nelson has owned his Labradoodle, Arbo, for about a year and a half, and he told HOH that his goal is to generate interest around what he calls the “best of both worlds” breed. “They have the friendly demeanor of the lab and the intelligence of the poodle,” he said. Labradoodles don’t shed, which is good for Malia Obama’s allergies, and unlike the water dog, they are bred in a variety of sizes.
Arbo speaks directly to Obama on the site, telling the soon-to-be prez that Labradoodles are “‘super fun,’ ‘super cute’ & ‘super smart.’” And Nelson notes he and the Obamas could meet up for doggie play dates, since he lives on 16th Street Northwest, in the nearest single-family home to the White House.
“We truly are the president’s neighbor,” he said. “How great would it be to turn the South Lawn into a dog park?”
HOH couldn’t find a lobby shop representing Portuguese water dogs. But we do note that Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) endorsed the breed in a recent statement.
“The Obama girls — and their parents — will love a Portuguese water dog,” said Kennedy, who owns water dogs Sunny, Splash and new addition Cappy. “They’re loyal, smart, loving and they became a real part of the family.”