After months of backlash, Mitt Romney says he wouldn't put his dog on the car roof again.
by China DeSpain
Categories: Animals
Tags: , .

It’s the political story all animal activists are familiar with by now: Back in 1983, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his family took a vacation with the family’s Irish Setter, Seamus, strapped to the top of the car.

This callous act has spawned both protests and websites by animal lovers, most notably Dogs Against Romney, whose message is, “Mitt Romney is mean to dogs.”

Now, in a new interview with Diane Sawyer, the Romneys are sharing their side of the story, including their opinion that Seamus “loved” traveling atop the family vehicle.

Sawyer bluntly asked the candidate, “As we move away from this primary campaign into the next phase — again, on Yahoo, we got two questions most often, first about Seamus — which as you know is out there forever — would you do it again?”

His answer? “Certainly not with the attention it’s received.”

Not exactly the kind-hearted response one might have hoped for. It seems that after all the backlash, Romney is still more concerned with the negative media than with pet welfare.

Perhaps in an effort to soften that blow, Ann Romney (Mitt’s wife) shared a bit more about Seamus. Not only did she claim that the story of dog abuse has been the most wounding thing about the campaign so far, she described the vitriol over the situation as “crazy.”

It’s her opinion that Seamus was perfectly content with his mode of travel. She explained that the dog was in a kennel on the roof, not just the open air, and compared it to the human experience of riding a motorcycle or roller coaster.

“The dog loved it,” she says. “He would see that crate and, you know, he would, like, go crazy because he was going with us on vacation. It was to me a kinder thing to bring him along than to leave him in the kennel for two weeks.”

She also dismissed the suggestion that the dog was improperly cared for because he was sick and defecated all over the car, and the family had to stop and hose everything off.

“Once, he — we traveled all the time —  and he ate the turkey on the counter.  I mean, he had the runs,” she explains in the interview — while laughing.

Yeah. Hilarious.

Photo Credit: Christopher Halloran /

About China DeSpain

China DeSpain is a San Antonio-based writer and blogger. She loves pop culture, animal rights, health and fitness, international travel, books and wigs. Follow China on Twitter: @ChinaDeSpain

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