Monday, December 22, 2008

Biden To Adopt Second Dog (News)

December 20, 2008 Biden announces family will adopt pound puppy, too

The News Journal Vice President-elect Joe Biden, who took heat from animal-rights advocatesfor buying a German shepherd puppy from a breeder this month, is looking fora second pooch -- and this time it will be a pound puppy.

Biden revealed his canine intentions during an interview on the ABC Newsshow "This Week with George Stephanopoulous" that will air Sunday at 9 a.m. Stephanopoulous -- who also spoke to Biden about such topics as hispriorities as vice president, his historic campaign with Barack Obama andthe economy -- blogged about the dogs Friday. "I've had German shepherdssince I was a kid and I've actually trained them and shown them in thepast," Biden said during the interview, according to the ABC News blog. "SoI wanted a German shepherd and we're going to get a pound dog, which my wifewants, who is hopefully a golden [retriever]."The dogs will live at the vice president's residence with a spacious fencedyard in Washington, Biden said.

The longtime Delaware senator also indicated the new dog will be picked outany day, telling Stephanopoulous he expects his grandchildren to name bothdogs on Christmas morning.

Biden spokeswoman Elizabeth Alexander dismissed any notion that Biden was bowing to pressure from groups such as People forthe Ethical Treatment of Animals. After Biden got the shepherd at a Chester County, Pa., kennel, the group'spresident said: "By paying money to a dog breeder, the Bidens have in effect signed a death warrant for a loving dog at an animal shelter who would havebeen thrilled to go home with them.'

'Taking home a shelter dog was always Biden's intention, Alexander said."When the Bidens have had dogs in the past, they've gotten two so they couldplay with each other,'' Alexander said Friday night. "As he mentioned, they are in the process of looking for the second dog, from a rescue shelter,which was always their plan.''Shelter and rescue advocates in the region praised Biden's decision.

"That's terrific,'' said Jane Pierantozzi, executive director of FaithfulFriends, which operates a no-kill shelter near Newport and encouraged Bidento choose from a Delaware shelter. "I honestly think some people don'trealize the plight of homeless and abused pets."The Faithful Friends shelter frequently has Golden Retriever mixes.

"The shelters get great animals,''she said.Robin Adams, president of the Delaware Valley Golden Retriever Rescue, saidPennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell has adopted at least two dogs from her shelternear Lancaster.Adams encouraged Biden to ask his friend and fellow Democrat Rendell "aboutour organization and the efforts we go through her to make sure we match theright dog to the right family.''Robin Heinecke, president of the Golden Retriever Rescue Education and Training group that serves dog-seekers from Washington to Pennsylvania, saidshe was heartened by Biden's decision."When I saw that he got a puppy, I thought he should have rescued a dog,''Heinecke said."It's an idea I come to love. A golden retriever for the vicepresident would be a lovely thing.' ________________________________________


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