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Monday, May 23, 2011

Congressional Pets Have Their Day

Who is Capitol Hill’s most distinguished dog? The most captivating cat? How about the handsomest horse? We will soon find out, as Members of Congress and their staff over the last few weeks have been submitting photos of their beloved dogs, cats and horses for the 2011 Congressional Pet Photo Contest, co-sponsored by HSLF and The HSUS.

Liberty, owned by Rep. James Lankford, R-Okla.

The contest is a "bi-pawtisan" event to celebrate Washington’s furriest movers and shakers. Christina Wilkie of The Hill reported that “competition is fierce,” and Emily Heil of Roll Call’s “Heard on the Hill” column called it “an epic competition of adorableness.” We’ll be giving out a number of awards, including Barker of the House, Feline Pawjority Leader, and Steed of State.

More than 200 pet photos were entered in the contest, each one with its own unique story. Entries ranged from pampered puppies to formerly feral cats and retired racehorses. It warmed my heart to see the incredible diversity of animals who have found homes on the Hill, and to read the descriptions of these pets. Each one is a testament to the compassion that lawmakers and staffers alike have for their four-legged companions.

Gibbs, owned by Erin Moffet,
staffer for Rep. Alcee L. Hastings, D-Fla.

Today marks the opening of a new phase of the contest—the People’s Choice competition. Now is your chance to cast a vote for your favorite photo. Seven semi-finalists have been selected, and one lucky winner will receive the coveted People’s Choice Award of 2011—and supreme bragging rights!

Here’s how it works: Visit the People’s Choice website through June 6th to view the semi-finalists, and vote for the candidate of your choice—it’s that simple. Check back June 15th when we will announce the winner. Vote today for your favorite congressional pet!


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