Odd Presidential Pets

confusionIn the previous post about Presidential Dogs (i.e. “First Dog”), I linked to a Wikipedia article of all the previous presidential pets. What I didn’t notice after I posted was the odd collection of animals that these presidents owned.

For example, the last president, George W. Bush, had a cow named named Ofelia.

Ok, maybe I’m just a city boy who has no appreciation for the farm life or the abundance of wonderful barnyard animals that people in more farm’ish areas get to see and play with. Maybe it’s a generational gap thing. Or maybe it’s a lack of animal protection in the great ol’ state of Texas.

Whatever it is, I am confused but I’ll accept it. Cow can be a pet. But what about Herbert Hoover? He had two ALLIGATORS. I’m no Crocodile Hunter nor do I work for Secret Service, but I don’t think wild beast/top predator of the jungle qualify as domestic companion pets.

What’s even more bizarre? John Quincy Adams had SILKWORMS as pets. In some countries, that’s food. (Well, but then again, in those countries cats and dogs are food too. Ok, I lost that point.)

Yes, like the Captain Jack Sparrow would say, these presidents don’t make any sense at all. In fact, none of these make sense (note either the animal species or the pet name). Teddy Roosevelt had not just a rooster (odd in itself), but a ONE LEGGED rooster. And John Adams, a president in the 19th century, had a dog named Satan.

But Calvin Coolidge had the coolest pet: two lions.  Not just two lions, two lions named Tax Reduction and Budget Bureau. (And you thought TARP was a cool name.)

Here are some more odd names/animals that the US presidents have taken in:

George w. Bush
– Ofelia – Longhorn cow

Herbert Hoover
– 2 Alligators

Calvin Coolidge
– Rebecca and Horace – Raccoons
– Tax Reduction and Budget Bureau – lion cubs
– Ebeneezer – Donkey
– Billy – Pygmy hippo
– A Wallaby
– A Duiker (a very small antelope)
– A black bear

Woodrow Wilson
– Old Ike – Ram
– songbirds
– sheep

Theodore Roosevelt
– Emily Spinach – Garter snake
– Maude – Pig
– Baron Spreckle – Hen
– Josiah – Badger
– Jonathan – Piebald rat
– Dr. Johnson, Bishop Doane, Fighting Bob Evans, and Father O’Grady – Guinea pigs
– A one-legged rooster

Benjamin Harrison
– Whiskers – Goat
– Mr. Reciprocity and Mr. Protection – Opossums

Andrew Johnson
– Fed white mice he found in his bedroom

Abraham Lincoln
– Nanny and Nanko – goats
– Jack – Turkey

James Buchanan
– Eagle

William Henry Harrison
– Sukey – Cow
– Goat

Martin Van Buren
– Briefly owned two tiger cubs

Andrew Jackson
– Fighting cocks

John Quincy Adams
– American Alligator
– Silkworms

Thomas Jefferson
– Dick, Mockingbird
– 2 Bear Cubs

John Adams
– Juno and Satan – Dogs

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