Hudson Valley K-9 in The White House


FDR's Scottish Terrier Fala

They say that if you want a friend in Washington, get a dog. All but 10 of our Presidents took that advice seriously. Over the past two centuries of White House history there have been over 100 dogs that have made 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue their home. One of the most famous of these dogs had a home right here in the Hudson Valley. Murray the outlaw of Falahill graced the lawn of the White House and Hyde Park from 1940 until his death in 1952. More commonly known as Fala, this little Scottish terrier won the hearts of the nation and his master, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. The President received Fala as a gift on November 10th 1940. Mrs. Augustus G. Kellog from Connecticut asked Roosevelt’s cousin Margaret Suckley to train the pup and deliver him to the White House. He became devoted to his master and even has the honor of being buried along side him at the Rose Garden at his home at Hyde Park. Fala was well behaved unlike the first Scottish terrier that entered the White House with the Roosevelts in 1933. Years before Fala, Eleanor Roosevelt brought her Scotty Meggie to the executive mansion and from the beginning she was nothing but trouble. She even managed to bite a woman from the press who was in the middle of interviewing the first lady. Needless to say, Meggie didn’t stay long.

There were other trouble makers in the White House as well as well behaved and famous dogs through time. To learn more about Fala and the other White House K-9s we invite you to come out to The Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt on May 28th from 10:00 to 12:00 for a special presentation. And bring your K-9 friends!

Free Community Photography Workshop

Saturday, May 28th, 10 am - 12
Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt NHS
At the Roosevelt Stables

Presidential Dogs: A Dog’s Tale
10 – 11 am
Talk presented by NPS Ranger Shannon Butler

The Art of K-9 Photography
11 am - 12
Talk presented by photographer
Al Nowak of On Location Studios
Poughkeepsie, NY.
Photo session to follow.

Dogs are welcome as long as they are socialized and on a leash.

Free and open to the public

For more information please or 845-229-2006

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  • Blog Author

    Shannon Butler

    Shannon Butler is a Park Ranger of Interpretation and Education at Roosevelt-Vanderbilt National Historic Site in Hyde Park New York. She has also interpreted the Senate House State Historic Site in Kingston New York. Read Full
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