Encounters With The Great Dogs Of History

This is FDR’s dog Fala.  He was famous in his day.

FDR was accused of sending a destroyer back to fetch him after accidentally leaving him on an Aleutian island (why did the President bring his dog to Alaska in the middle of wartime?  I don’t know).

Here is FDR’s zinger of a response, playing on the fact everyone knew back then that Scots are “tight with a penny” as Norm Macdonald put it:

These Republican leaders have not been content with attacks on me, or my wife, or on my sons. No, not content with that, they now include my little dog, Fala. Well, of course, I don’t resent attacks, and my family don’t resent attacks, but Fala does resent them. You know, Fala is Scotch, and being a Scottie, as soon as he learned that the Republican fiction writers in Congress and out had concocted a story that I’d left him behind on an Aleutian island and had sent a destroyer back to find him — at a cost to the taxpayers of two or three, or eight or twenty million dollars — his Scotch soul was furious. He has not been the same dog since. I am accustomed to hearing malicious falsehoods about myself … But I think I have a right to resent, to object, to libelous statements about my dog!

Anyway.

Yesterday I had the pleasure of talking to a woman who once had lunch with Eleanor Roosevelt at Hyde Park.  She said Fala sat on her feet the whole lunch.



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