In 1992, former President George H.W. Bush wrote a letter to White House staff, urging them not to give any food to his overweight dog, Ranger.
The letter recently resurfaced on International Dog Day.
The President asked all offices to take a formal pledge, which included refraining from feeding Ranger any type of food, including biscuits. To further emphasize this, Ranger was to wear a badge alongside his regular ID that stated “Do not feed me.”
The letter adds that Ranger is not to “wander the corridors,” but he has free reign through the woods at Camp David. He also asked the people to “rat” on anyone seen feeding Ranger.
The letter also stated that he would report on Ranger’s “fight against obesity,” referring to him as “a blimp, a nice friendly appealing blimp, but a blimp” at the time. Moreover, Ranger will enter the Houston Fat Stock Show as a “Prime Hereford” if the weight loss journey is unsuccessful. In a later letter, Bush speaks of Ranger’s death.
He writes: “I cried for two days.” I cried because I loved him and knew I’d miss him, for he had made me the happiest dog owner in the whole world. “I know that when you are an old guy, you aren’t supposed to cry, but I did.”
As per the presidential pet museum, Ranger was the favorite puppy of George H.W. Bush. During the press conference, Ranger was mistaken for Millie, an English springer spaniel. “The other day our dog Ranger appeared at a press conference, and he was called Millie [by reporters].
“He’s a strong male dog here, as you can see, and his feelings were slightly hurt,” said president Bush. Ranger, a brown and white English springer spaniel, was the only male puppy named after the Texas Rangers baseball team.
According to First Lady Barbara Bush, Ranger and President Bush had such a close bond that they would shower together at least once a day.