Vice President isn't the only high-level position that Barack Obama is currently trying to fill. It's been widely reported that - win or lose - the Obamas have promised their two daughters a dog after the presidential election.
Canine choices were narrowed by their daughters' allergies. American Kennel Club experts have offered some suggestions and invited the public to vote on their picks at www.presidentialpup.com.
Here are the nominees:
¢ The Bichon Frise: A small yet sturdy dog with a white, loosely curled double coat, Bichons are naturally sociable. They have a self-assured temperament and are likely to get along with just about everyone (including members of Congress, regardless of party affiliation).
¢ The Chinese Crested: Their Chinese and African heritage makes for an exotic pedigree, and with its unique appearance it's certain to turn heads. Coming in two varieties, hairless and the powderpuff, Cresteds are lively, playful and alert dogs with plenty of energy.
¢ The Poodle: Although often considered high-maintenance show dogs, Poodles are exceptionally smart and athletic. They excel in obedience training and even as hunting companions. While a poodle's coat does require frequent grooming, its intelligence and versatility more than make up for the extra care.
¢ The Miniature Schnauzer: Schnauzers also come in three sizes (although unlike the Poodle, each size is considered a separate breed). The Miniature Schnauzer is the most popular of the three breeds and is an active, alert dog who loves to be the center of the household.
¢ The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier: This dog's coat grows longer on its chin and over its eyes, giving it a scruffy appearance, but this intelligent, affectionate and loving breed makes a dignified companion. The breed's playfulness and courageous spirit would likely make him an ambassador of goodwill in the White House.