http://www.marketwatch.com/news/sto...2384EE-2BFB-4BBD-9C30-9767F12BEA13}&dist=hpprNEW YORK, Aug 28, 2008 /PRNewswire-USNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Now that Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama has chosen his running mate, it's time for him to concentrate on another important selection: family dog. The American Kennel Club® (AKC) announced today that the public has elected a Poodle as their breed of choice for the Obama family.
The AKC launched its poll to find a breed for Obama ( http://www.presidentialpup.com) after reports that -- win or lose -- the Obamas promised their two daughters a dog after the presidential election. More than 42,000 people cast their vote over the seven-week campaign. The Poodle clinched the nomination after the breed battled it out with the Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier in a race almost as tight as Clinton and Obama's run for the Democratic nomination for president. The Poodle won by a (dog) hair, with just a few hundred votes separating the top two contenders. The Miniature Schnauzer, Bichon Frise, and Chinese Crested were also nominated, due to the distinct characteristics that make them uniquely suited for the Obama family. Every family is unique, but for the Obamas who have a daughter with allergies, a hypoallergenic breed with a very consistent and predictable coat is crucial. "Most of our Presidents kept purebreds in the White House," said AKC Spokesperson Lisa Peterson. "When times get tough -- during a bad economy or when presidential pressures are at their peak -- these dogs serve as devoted and non-judgmental companions that bring joy and relaxation to our first families." If the Obamas follow America's advice and choose a Poodle, the AKC will assist them in responsibly acquiring a puppy or adult rescue dog. The AKC's puppy-buyer resource page at http://www.puppybuyerinfo.com offers links to responsible breeders who are members of AKC clubs as well as to affiliated breed rescue-groups that have dogs for adoption. For instance, the Poodle National Breed Club web site can be located at http://www.poodleclubofamerica.org/usamap.htm. The Obama family may be adding a dog to their household for the first time, but Republican nominee John McCain is ahead of the pack with 24 pets, including four dogs. Therefore, animal lovers may be ready to help him "fetch" the election. According to a recent Associated Press survey, "Pet owners favor McCain over Obama 42 percent to 37 percent, with dog owners particularly in McCain's corner." "It's no surprise the American public chose a Poodle for Obama," said Peterson. "Poodles are currently the eighth most popular breed in the U.S., according to 2007 AKC registrations statistics, and it spent more than two decades in the top spot -- a true testament to its suitability as a family pet. And while Poodles require frequent grooming, their consistent and predictable coat is crucial for their daughter and all who suffer from allergies." Poodles, often considered high-maintenance show dogs, can also be kept in a simple one-length clip. They are exceptionally smart and athletic, excel in obedience training and are great hunting companions. They are the only breed that comes in three sizes, any of which can easily adapt to life in the urban environment of the White House or the rural setting at Camp David. The Standard variety is the largest size, measuring over 15 inches at the shoulder. It is the oldest of the three varieties and developed for water retrieving. The Miniature measures over 10 inches but less than 15 inches and it is speculated that it was used for truffle hunting. The Toy Poodle measures 10 inches and under and was often used in performances and traveling entertainment groups. Learn more about the Poodle and its suitability for your family at http://www.akc.org/breeds/poodle/. Founded in 1884, the American Kennel Club (AKC) is a not-for-profit organization which maintains the largest registry of purebred dogs in the world and oversees the sport of purebred dogs in the United States. The AKC is dedicated to upholding the integrity of its registry, promoting the sport of purebred dogs and breeding for type and function. Along with its nearly 5,000 member clubs and its affiliated organizations, the AKC advocates for the purebred dog as a family companion, advances canine health and well-being, works to protect the rights of all dog owners and promotes responsible dog ownership. More than 20,000 competitions for AKC-registered purebred dogs are held under AKC rules and regulations each year including conformation, agility, obedience, rally, tracking, herding, lure coursing, coonhound events, hunt tests, field and earthdog tests. Affiliate AKC organizations include the AKC Humane Fund, AKC Canine Health Foundation, AKC Companion Animal Recovery and the AKC Museum of the Dog. For more information, visit http://www.akc.org. SOURCE American Kennel Club