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Presidential Debate: First Dog or First Cat? You Decide

We elect our president -- shouldn't we have some say in choosing the first pet?

Michael Leaverton  |  Aug 21st 2012

Mitt Rommey traveling with his dog on top of his car got us to thinking: What is better for America among presidential pets, a first dog or a first cat? (Cat.) Is there room for both? (No.) Should we open this to democratic debate based on how a pet can best serve the president, pal? (Fine.)

1. Greeting the president

You’re leaping out of the chopper in front of the press corps — who do you want in the photo op? The dog, bounding across the lawn like he hasn’t seen you in 15 years and you’re covered in meat drippings? Or the cat, silently regarding you from the window in Lincoln’s bedroom, looking like he just knows that you haven’t brought home chicken again (which you haven’t).

Advantage: dog

2. Comforting the president

It’s late, the lights are dimmed, and you’re having a final brandy while watching Barney Miller with the sound off. Who’s you’re friend? The dog, with all his slobbery and misplaced optimism? Or the cat, who seems to know exactly the dimensions of what you did, the terrifying scale and the unimaginable consequences — and he’s forgiven you already, because you’re going to give him skritchies.

Advantage: cat

3. Amusing the president

As president, you’re not going to clean up after your own pet, so what’s more fun? Watching your press secretary shuffle across the lawn toting blue baggies and looking for the dog-business, or catching your press secretary hunched over the litter box in the wee hours while slowly lifting clumps in a sad, reflective moment? Note: you can also give the job to the VP (just put it in the job description).

Advantage: Even

4. Campaigning for the president

The only thing bringing a cat on the campaign trail will get you is hissing and lawsuits. A dog, however, will roll through the crowd like tipsy George McGovern, shaking hands and licking babies and eating all the food.

Advantage: dog

5. Playing with the president

What kind of president do you want to be seen as? The kind who throws a tennis ball across the great lawn like Dwight Evans firing it home from deep center? Or the kind who sits in a chair and watches his cat sit in a box?

Advantage: unclear (check polling)

And the Winner Is …


(Results are final. All disagreements are invalid.)