They say politics is a dog eat dog business, but for President Bush’s dog Barney, it became a dog eat reporter affair.
You can see what happened on You Tube (http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=BQOG969hElQ&feature=related) when the Scottish Terrier decided he had had enough press attention. I don’t know about you, but when I watch that video what I see is a dog clearly giving off, “Don’t come near me signals.” The reporter ignored these at his peril.
Barney is avoiding eye contact, not wagging his tail, which he is holding stiffly, and if he was not on the lead he would clearly have trotted away a long time before the incident. So it’s not exactly surprising that when a hand is jabbed into his face, he bites it. This is a lesson in how not to approach a dog.
Of course, Barney won’t be at the White House much longer, as soon the Obamas will be taking up residence, and that will mean a new “First Dog”. Apparently the favourite breed (I know it’s not a formally recognised breed) to accompany the family is a Goldendoodle. That’s a mix of a Golden Retriever and a Poodle. Let’s just hope that by then someone’s had a word with the reporters about how to read a dog’s body language.
Meanwhile in the UK another dog’s teeth were getting him in trouble. Poor Hubble was abandoned by his owners, and left tied to a tree, because his teeth – some protruding, some missing - made him look too ugly. Indeed the papers have branded him Britain’s ugliest dog. (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1082715/Britains-ugliest-dog-Hub...) Hubble is a very friendly dog, and is now waiting for a new owner to find him at a Dog’s Trust shelter, and with all the press interest in him, he’s almost bound to be in a great new home soon.
So whether you use your teeth, or lose your teeth it’s a dog’s life either way. And the press may be the part of the problem or part of the solution.