History Proves That U.S Presidents Absolutely LOVE Dogs

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Not all U.S. Presidents love dogs, but it’s good to know that most have and continue to do so. To prove my point, here is the history of America’s Presidential First Dogs and other pets. Do any of these matches surprise you?

1. George Washington – Proof That Presidents Love Dogs

“On April 30, 1789, George Washington, standing on the balcony of Federal Hall on Wall Street in New York, took his oath of office as the first President of the United States.”

Black and tan coonhound

President Washington owned Sweet Lips, Scentwell and Vulcan – American Staghounds and Drunkard, Taster, Tipler, and Tipsy: Black and Tan Coonhounds.

2. John Adams

“John Adams, a remarkable political philosopher, served as the second President of the United States (1797-1801), after serving as the first Vice President under President George Washington.” In addition to his service, President Adams owned two dogs, Juno and Satan of undocumented breeds.

3. Thomas Jefferson

“Thomas Jefferson, a spokesman for democracy, was an American Founding Father, the principal author of the Declaration of Independence (1776), and the third President of the United States (1801–1809).”

Fawn Briard, loyal and protective sheepdog,

President Jefferson had Buzzy and one unnamed pup, both Briards.

4. James Madison  

“James Madison, America’s fourth President (1809-1817), made a major contribution to the ratification of the Constitution by writing The Federalist Papers, along with Alexander Hamilton and John Jay. In later years, he was referred to as the ‘Father of the Constitution.'” Another thing of note, as much as we believe Presidents love dogs, there is no record of President Madison having one.

5. James Monroe 

“James Monroe was the fifth President of the United States (1817–1825) and the last President of the Founding Fathers.”

Cocker Spaniels are lovable family dogs

President Monroe owned Buddy, a Spaniel.

6. John Quincy Adams  

“John Quincy Adams, son of John and Abigail Adams, served as the sixth President of the United States from 1825 to 1829. A member of multiple political parties over the years, he also served as a diplomat, a Senator, and a member of the House of Representatives.” In addition, here is a fun fact. Although President Adams did not own a dog, he did have an alligator as a pet.

7. Andrew Jackson  

“Andrew Jackson was the seventh President of the United States from 1829 to 1837, seeking to act as the direct representative of the common man.” President Jackson had several horses and a parrot named Pol, who is known for speaking his mind with particularly colorful language.

8. Martin Van Buren 

“Martin Van Buren was the eighth President of the United States (1837-1841), after serving as the eighth Vice President and the tenth Secretary of State, both under President Andrew Jackson. While the country was prosperous when the “Little Magician” was elected, less than three months later the financial panic of 1837 punctured the prosperity.” President Van Buren, also dogless, had two tiger cubs, and a few horses.

9. William Henry Harrison  

“William Henry Harrison, an American military officer and politician, was the ninth President of the United States (1841), the oldest President to be elected at the time. On his 32nd day, he became the first to die in office, serving the shortest tenure in U.S. Presidential history.” President Harrison, continuing to show his country roots, had a cow and a goat as pets.

I know presidents love dogs, but the last four were not feeling the love. Wow.

10. John Tyler  

“John Tyler became the tenth President of the United States (1841-1845) when President William Henry Harrison died in April 1841. He was the first Vice President to succeed to the Presidency after the death of his predecessor.” 

Italian Greyhound a President’s dog

President Tyler owned Le Beau, an Italian Greyhound.

11. James K. Polk

“Often referred to as the first “dark horse,” James K. Polk was the 11th President of the United States from 1845 to 1849, the last strong President until the Civil War.” As far as pets are concerned, President Polk only raised horses.

12. Zachary Taylor  

“Zachary Taylor, a general and national hero in the United States Army from the time of the Mexican-American War and the War of 1812, was elected the 12th U.S. President, serving from March 1849 until his death in July 1850.”

Irish Wolfhound

President Taylor owned a horse, a canary, and two Irish Wolfhounds.

13. Millard Fillmore  

“Millard Fillmore, a member of the Whig party, was the 13th President of the United States (1850-1853) and the last President not to be affiliated with either the Democratic or Republican parties.” A strong advocate of the ASPCA, President Millard did not own any pets.

14. Franklin Pierce  

“Franklin Pierce became 14th President of the United States at a time of apparent tranquility (1853-1857). By pursuing the recommendations of southern advisers, Pierce — a New Englander — hoped to ease the divisions that led eventually to Civil War.”

Japanese Hin Dog

Although the exact breed is not documented, President Pierce is known to have owned seven miniature Asian dogs, therefore it’s possible they were Japanese Hin dogs.

15. James Buchanan  

“James Buchanan, the 15th President of the United States (1857-1861), served immediately prior to the American Civil War. He remains the only President to be elected from Pennsylvania and to remain a lifelong bachelor.”

Toy fox terrier

President Buchanan owned two dogs, Lara, a Newfoundland, and Punch, a Toy Terrier

16. Abraham Lincoln  

“Abraham Lincoln became the United States’ 16th President in 1861, issuing the Emancipation Proclamation that declared forever free those slaves within the Confederacy in 1863.” 

Yellow mixed breed dog

President Lincoln had a yellow mixed-breed dog, possibly resembling the one shown above.

17. Andrew Johnson   

“With the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Johnson became the 17th President of the United States (1865-1869), an old-fashioned southern Jacksonian Democrat of pronounced states’ rights views.” Though not a dog owner, President Johnson was known for feeding the Whitehouse mice.

18. Ulysses S. Grant  

“In 1865, as commanding general, Ulysses S. Grant led the Union Armies to victory over the Confederacy in the American Civil War. As an American hero, Grant was later elected the 18th President of the United States (1869–1877), working to implement Congressional Reconstruction and to remove the vestiges of slavery.” 

Newfoundland dogs are great water dogs

President Grant had a couple of dogs. He had Faithful, a Newfoundland, and Rosie, a mixed-breed dog.

19. Rutherford B. Hayes  – Presidents Love Dogs For Sure

“As the 19th President of the United States (1877-1881), Rutherford B. Hayes oversaw the end of Reconstruction, began the efforts that led to civil service reform, and attempted to reconcile the divisions left over from the Civil War.”

loyal dogs
photo from www.akc.org

President Hayes is proof that Presidents love dogs, as he had several. Dot was a Cocker Spaniel, Hector a Newfoundland, Duke an English Mastiff, Grim a Greyhound, Juno and Shep, both hunting dogs, and Jet, a mixed-breed.

20. James Garfield  

“James Garfield was elected as the United States’ 20th President in 1881, after nine terms in the U.S. House of Representatives. His Presidency was impactful but cut short after 200 days when he was assassinated”. President Garfield’s dog is Veto, a mixed breed. 

21. Chester A. Arthur  

“The son of a Baptist preacher who had emigrated from northern Ireland, Chester A. Arthur was America’s 21st President (1881-85), succeeding President James Garfield upon his assassination.” There is no record of this president owning pets.

22. Grover Cleveland  

“The first Democrat elected after the Civil War in 1885, our 22nd and 24th President Grover Cleveland was the only President to leave the White House and return for a second term four years later (1885-1889 and 1893-1897).” 

poodles are loving dogs

President Cleveland’s dog was a Poodle. We don’t know its name.

23. Benjamin Harrison  

“Benjamin Harrison was the 23rd President of the United States from 1889 to 1893, elected after conducting one of the first “front-porch” campaigns by delivering short speeches to delegations that visited him in Indianapolis.”

The Rough Collie

President Harrison had a Collie named Dash.

24. Grover Cleveland 

“The first Democrat elected after the Civil War in 1885, our 22nd and 24th President Grover Cleveland was the only President to leave the White House and return for a second term four years later (1885-1889 and 1893-1897).” 

President Cleveland had a Poodle, but its name is not documented.

25. William McKinley 

“William McKinley was the 25th President of the United States, serving from March 4, 1897, until his assassination on September 14, 1901, after leading the nation to victory in the Spanish-American War and raising protective tariffs to promote American industry. This President had a parrot and a cat, with four kittens, as pets.”

26. Theodore Roosevelt  

“With the assassination of President William McKinley, Theodore Roosevelt, not quite 43, became the 26th and youngest President in the Nation’s history (1901-1909). He brought new excitement and power to the office, vigorously leading Congress and the American public toward progressive reforms and a strong foreign policy.”

Chesapeake Bay Retriever

An animal lover extraordinaire, President Roosevelt had an array of pets. His dogs – a Chesapeake Bay Retriever named Sailor Boy, a Pekingese Manchu, Skip a mixed breed dog, and Jack and Pete, Terriers. This is further proof that presidents love dogs.

27. William Howard Taft  

“William Howard Taft was elected the 27th President of the United States (1909-1913) and later became the tenth Chief Justice of the United States (1921-1930), the only person to have served in both of these offices.” President Taft’s dog’s name is Caruso and his breed is not known.

28. Woodrow Wilson  

“Woodrow Wilson, a leader of the Progressive Movement, was the 28th President of the United States (1913-1921). After a policy of neutrality at the outbreak of World War I, Wilson led America into war in order to ‘make the world safe for democracy.'”

Airedale terrier

President Wilson had three dogs, Davie – an Airedale Terrier, Mountain Boy -a Greyhound and Bruce – a Bull Terrier.

29. Warren G. Harding  

“Warren G. Harding, an Ohio Republican, was the 29th President of the United States (1921-1923). Though his term in office was fraught with scandal, including Teapot Dome, Harding embraced technology and was sensitive to the plights of minorities and women.”

President Harding had two dogs, Laddie Boy – an Airedale Terrier and Old Boy – a Bulldog.

30. Calvin Coolidge  

“As America’s 30th President (1923-1929), Calvin Coolidge demonstrated his determination to preserve the old moral and economic precepts of frugality amid the material prosperity which many Americans were enjoying during the 1920s era.”

Presidents love dogs, and President Coolidge proves it himself. His dogs are Rob Roy and Prudence Prim, which are white Collies, Peter Pan, a Terrier, Paul Pry, an Airedale Terrier, Calamity Jane, a Shetland Sheepdog, Tiny Tim and Blackberry, Chow Chows, Ruby Rouch, a Collie, Boston Beans, a Bulldog, King Cole, a German Shepherd, Palo Alto, a Bird dog, and Bessie, who was a Collie.

31. Herbert Hoover  

“Before serving as America’s 31st President from 1929 to 1933, Herbert Hoover had achieved international success as a mining engineer and worldwide gratitude as “The Great Humanitarian” who fed war-torn Europe during and after World War I.”

Belgian Malinois Dog.

Certainly, this president loves dogs too. Check out his pack – King Tut, a Belgian Shepherd,  Pat, a German Shepherd, Big Ben and Sonnie, Fox Terriers, Glen, a Scotch Collie, Yukonan, an Eskimo dog, Patrick, an Irish Wolfhound, Eaglehurst Gillette, a Setter, and Weejie, a Norwegian Elkhound.

32. Franklin D. Roosevelt  

“Assuming the Presidency at the depth of the Great Depression as our 32nd President (1933-1945), Franklin D. Roosevelt helped the American people regain faith in themselves.”

great family dog, loyal and protective

These are the dogs belonging to President Roosevelt, Fala, a Scottish Terrier, Majora, a German Shepherd, Meggie, a Scottish Terrier, Winks, Llewellyn Setter, Tiny, Old English Sheepdog, President, a Great Dane, and Blaze, a Mastiff.

33. Harry S. Truman  

“During his few weeks as Vice President, Harry Truman scarcely saw President Franklin Roosevelt and received no briefing on the development of the atomic bomb or the unfolding difficulties with Soviet Russia. Suddenly these and a host of other wartime problems became Truman’s to solve when, on April 12, 1945, he became America’s 33rd President.”

Irish Setter dog

President Truman’s pets included a Cocker Spaniel named Feller and an Irish Setter named Mike.

34. Dwight D. Eisenhower  

“Bringing to the Presidency his prestige as commanding general of the victorious forces in Europe during World War II, Dwight D. Eisenhower obtained a truce in Korea and worked incessantly during his two terms (1953-1961) to ease the tensions of the Cold War.”

Weimaraner dog

Heidi, a Weimaraner, was President Eisenhower’s dog.

35. John F. Kennedy  

“John F. Kennedy was the 35th President of the United States (1961-1963), the youngest man elected to the office. On November 22, 1963, when he was hardly past his first thousand days in office, JFK was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, becoming also the youngest President to die.”

Soviet Space dog Strelka

Presidents love dogs, and no one more than President Kennedy. His pack included Pushinka, a Mutt (gift of Russian premier, puppy of Soviet space dog Strelka), Shannon, an Irish Cocker Spaniel, Wolf, a Mutt (possibly Wolfhound and Schnauzer mix), Clipper, a German Shepherd, as well as, Butterfly, White Tips, Blackie, and Streaker, who ere all Welsh Terriers

36. Lyndon B. Johnson  

“In the 1960 campaign, Lyndon B. Johnson was elected Vice President as John F. Kennedy’s running mate. On November 22, 1963, when Kennedy was assassinated, Johnson was sworn in as the 36th United States President, with a vision to build “A Great Society” for the American people.”

 

beagles are lovable pups

Presidents love dogs for sure, but the stunt President Johnson pulled by picking his Beagle “Him” up by his ears might make you doubt it. The rest of his pack is Her and Edgar, Beagles, Blanco, a White Collie, Freckles, another Beagle, and Yuki, a Mongrel

37. Richard M. Nixon  

“Richard Nixon was elected the 37th President of the United States (1969-1974) after previously serving as a U.S. Representative and a U.S. Senator from California. After successfully ending American fighting in Vietnam and improving international relations with the U.S.S.R. and China, he became the only President to ever resign the office, as a result of the Watergate scandal.”

Checkers Nixon’s Cocker Spaniel

What do Vicki: Poodle, Pasha: Terrier, King Timahoe: Irish Setter, and Checkers: Cocker Spaniel have in common? They all belonged to President Nixon.

38. Gerald R. Ford  

“When Gerald R. Ford took the oath of office on August 9, 1974, as our 38th President, he declared, ‘I assume the Presidency under extraordinary circumstances…This is an hour of history that troubles our minds and hurts our hearts.'” 

Golden Retriever

Above, you find a Golden Retriever, representative of Liberty, and Misty, President Ford’s dogs.

39. James Carter  

“Jimmy Carter served as the 39th President of the United States from 1977 to 1981. He was awarded the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize for work to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts, to advance democracy and human rights, and to promote economic and social development.

 

The Afghan hound is a long-coated dog

Grits, the Border Collie and Lewis Brown the Afghan Hound belonged to President Carter.

40. Ronald Reagan  

Ronald Reagan, originally an American actor and politician, became the 40th President of the United States serving from 1981 to 1989. His term saw a restoration of prosperity at home, with the goal of achieving “peace through strength” abroad.”

 

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog

To illustrate that Presidents love dogs, take a look at President Reagan. He reminds us, there’s no such thing as too many pups with this canine line-up: Lucky, a Bouvier des Flandres, Rex, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Victory, a Golden Retriever, Peggy, an Irish Setter, Taca, a Siberian Husky, and Fuzzy, a Belgian Sheepdog.

41. George H. W. Bush  

“George H. W. Bush, as the 41st President (1989-1993), brought to the White House a dedication to traditional American values and a determination to direct them toward making the United States “a kinder and gentler nation” in the face of a dramatically changing world.”

Indeed, Presidents love dogs and President Bush is no exception. His dogs Millie and Ranger were Springer Spaniels.

42. William J. Clinton 

“Bill Clinton, the first baby-boomer generation President, is an American politician from Arkansas who served as the 42nd President of the United States (1993-2001). He took office at the end of the Cold War” 

Chocolate Labrador

President Clinton’s dog is Buddy, a Chocolate Labrador Retriever.

43. George W. Bush  

“George W. Bush, America’s 43rd President (2001-2009), was transformed into a wartime President in the aftermath of the airborne terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, facing the ‘greatest challenge of any President since Abraham Lincoln.'” 

The Scottish Terrier (Scottie)

Hurricane Katrina left so many animals homeless or dead. As a result, President Bush signed a bill, the Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards (PETS) to ensure that no pets or service animals are left behind in a disaster. This action shows us that presidents love dogs. The Bush’s own pets included Spotty, a Springer Spaniel, a Scottish Terrier, Barney, India the cat, and Miss Beazley, a Scottish Terrier.

44. Barack Obama  

“Barack Obama served as the 44th President of the United States. His story is the American story — values from the heartland, a middle-class upbringing in a strong family, hard work and education as the means of getting ahead, and the conviction that a life so blessed should be lived in service to others.”

Portuguese Water Dog

President Obama has two dogs, Bo and Sunny, both Portuguese Water Dogs.

45. Donald J. Trump 

“Donald J. Trump is the 45th President of the United States. He believes the United States has incredible potential and will go on to exceed anything that it has achieved in the past. His campaign slogan was Make America Great Again, and that is exactly what he intends to do.” 

Mini Golden Doodle

Entering into his presidency, President Trump did not have a dog. Subsequently, you can now see him walking around the Whitehouse with Patton, his Goldendoodle.

Were you able to guess the breed of dog each President would have? I hope you enjoyed this journey down memory lane. Share this with your friends so they can see that most presidents love dogs; which are your favorites?

Since I want to remain politically neutral, I chose to utilize the descriptions of each President directly from the Whitehouse.com website. Take a visit if you want more info. 

If you are curious, here are ways you can communicate better with your dog.

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