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A Portuguese water dog in the White House? Portugal celebrates the possibilities

February 27, 2009 |  4:02 pm

Portuguese water dog People magazine's interview with Michelle Obama got America talking about the possibility of the first family bringing home a Portuguese water dog. But it seems to have gotten Portugal talking too.  The AFP reports:

News that a Portuguese Water Dog will become the First Canine of the United States is thrilling lovers of the breed in its native land, who say Barack Obama's family couldn't have picked better.

"It's been more than 500 years that these dogs have played a part in great moments of humanity," raved Hugo Oliveira of the Association for the Protection of Water Dogs, which champions the poodle-like breed in Portugal.

"It could be one of ours. Why not?" Carla Peralta, a Water Dog breeder in the southern Algarve region, told the popular 24 Horas daily.

Of course, we still don't know for sure what breed (or mixed-breed hybrid) the Obamas will choose; the first lady's press secretary splashed cold water on the notion that a Portuguese water dog was a done deal.  "Mrs. Obama likes the Portuguese water dog, but she is only one of four votes," she said in a statement Wednesday.

-- Lindsay Barnett

Photo: A Portuguese water dog puppy. Credit: Associated Press

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