Sunny, new White House dog, joins Obama family (VIDEO)


The Obama family's dogs, Sunny (R) and Bo (L), on the South Lawn of the White House on August 19, 2013.


Pete Souza/White House

There’s a new puppy at the White House. “Sunny,” a one-year-old Portuguese Water Dog, has joined President Barack Obama, his family and the first First Dog, Bo, at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, the White House announced.

Bo, who was a gift from the late Sen. Edward Kennedy in 2009, is also a Portuguese Water Dog, a breed the Obamas like because it doesn't aggravate daughter Malia’s allergies.

"We suspect Sunny will follow in Bo's footsteps and keep the president company in the Oval Office, go for walks with the first family after their 6:30 family dinner and even jump up on the first lady's lap from time to time!" the White House said in a statement.

Sunny is the latest member of an elite group of animals that have been pets to world leaders. It can be an important job.

Russian President Vladimir Putin reportedly has brought his black Labrador Retriever, Koni, to meetings with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who’s scared of dogs, to intimidate her.

And 10 Downing Street’s cat, Larry, is charged with keeping the UK Prime Minister’s residence rat-free.

Named for her happy disposition, the Obamas’ new dog seems well equipped to be a non-judgmental companion to a world leader, which may prove helpful this fall as the US president faces challenges ranging from responding to the crisis in Egypt to US immigration reform.

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