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Malia and Sasha Obama not pulling their weight with first puppy Bo?

May 1, 2009 |  5:02 pm

Bo walks with Malia and Sasha on the White House lawn What parent doesn't know that their child's promises to feed, care for and walk the new dog aren't likely to pan out? 

First Lady Michelle Obama is just the latest in a long line of moms and dads who wind up assuming responsibility for the less-fun parts of dog ownership, according to People Magazine:

"I got up at 5:15 a.m. in the morning to walk my puppy," [Mrs. Obama] said Thursday of Bo, the Portuguese Water Dog who joined the family Easter weekend, fulfilling President Obama's campaign promise to daughters Malia, 10, and Sasha, 7.

"Even though the kids are supposed to do a lot of the work, I'm still up at 5:15 a.m. taking my dog out. So for everyone who has a child asking for a puppy – you have to want the dog," Mrs. Obama said to knowing laughter from a luncheon audience of congressional spouses. "As I do," she added. "I love my Bo."

What's a parent to do to avoid picking up all the slack?  I-Love-Dogs suggests making a chart to remind kids of pressing pet care needs. "Let your child mark a check when the chore has been completed. The more he completes the chore, the easier it will be to remember," the site advises. 

Or if you're like Mrs. Obama (and a lot of other parents out there), you can just take care of your new pet yourself.  But where's the educational value in that?

-- Lindsay Barnett

Photo: Malia, left, and Sasha Obama walk Bo on the White House lawn.  Credit: Ron Edmonds / Associated Press

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