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AVMA: Obama Family Should Use Care When Selecting the First-Family Dog
Date:11/7/2008

SCHAUMBURG, Ill., Nov. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- In his acceptance speech Nov. 4, President-elect Barack Obama made a very public promise to his two beautiful daughters: "Sasha and Malia, I love you both so much, and you have earned the new puppy that's coming with us to the White House."

While praising the president-elect for making his first important decision immediately after learning of his election to the nation's highest office, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) advises Obama that the first family should devote the same care in picking a new family pet that he is in selecting his cabinet.

Dr. James Cook, president of the AVMA, says that Obamas' unique lifestyle will be a consideration. The AVMA can offer the Obamas, or any family considering a new dog, a great deal of information to help adopt and care for a new pet in downloadable brochures at http://www.avma.org/animal_health/brochures/dog_owners.asp.

"Certainly, the president of the United States of America should have any kind of dog that he wants," Dr. Cook says. "But I understand there may be a dog allergy in the Obama family, and, if that's the case, then choosing a dog that has low dander and doesn't shed much may be the right choice."

Dr. Cook adds that rescuing a dog from a shelter is a great option the Obama family should consider. "When you can take an unwanted animal and give it a home, it just makes you feel good," he says.

Dr. Cook said that the top consideration for any family selecting a pet is to first realistically assess the family home, schedule and any special considerations, such as the age of the children or allergies, and then pick a dog that fits your particular needs.

"AVMA has a brochure, What You Should Know About Selecting a Dog, at http://www.avma.org/animal_health/brochures/selecting/dog/selecting_dog_brochure.a sp that offers invaluable information that will help ensure that everyone, even the president-elect, is making the right choice," adds Cook.

The AVMA and its more than 76,000 member veterinarians are engaged in a wide

variety of activities dedicated to advancing the science and art of animal,

human and public health. Visit the AVMA Web site at http://www.avma.org for
more information.


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SOURCE American Veterinary Medical Association
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