Election Day is upon us, so Broadway Barks decided to look into the lives of some movers and shakers on Capitol Hill to see if Washington, DC has really gone to the dogs. Broadway Barks talked to New Jersey Congressman Frank LoBiondo, Virginia Congressman Gerry Connolly, and Congressional Staffer Stefani Zimmerman to get their answers to seven questions regarding their rescue pets.
Broadway Barks: What breed is your pet, and where did you find them?
LoBiondo: Lola and Luca are both rescued Weimaraners. Lola was rescued from a shelter in Las Vegas, and Luca was rescued from a shelter in Tinton Falls, NJ. Both were about 45 lbs. when they were adopted and were estimated to be about one year old. Lola is now 70 lbs. and approximately 12 years old, and Luca 90 lbs. and eight years old!
Connolly: Abigail Adams Connolly is a mixed poodle bichon that I adopted from the Fairfax County animal shelter last Christmas. I have been a passionate advocate for the animal shelter and was happy to give Abigail a home.
Zimmerman: Canoli is a long-haired dachshund, and I adopted him from the Humane Society when I was living in Michigan.
Broadway Barks: Does your pet like to go to work with you?
LoBiondo: Lola and Luca love going to work with both their mom and dad. With Frank, they get to go to all types of wonderful events, including 4th of July parades, Veterans Day ceremonies, school visits, beach cleanups, and charity walks. They especially love to cheer Tina on when she runs in the Atlantic City Half Marathon.
Connolly: No, she thinks Congress has already gone to the dogs.
Zimmerman: Canoli LOVES to come to work with me. He especially loves that he has unlimited attention, belly rubs, and treats all day.
Broadway Barks: What does your dog do to get into trouble?
LoBiondo: Lola never really gets in trouble, but Luca is a troublemaker, especially when he hides behind corners and scares his sister when she comes around the corner. Luca also likes to counter and trash surf, so we can’t leave anything lying around.
Connolly: Abby likes to eat the tassels off my shoes asymmetrically.
Zimmerman: Canoli knows he can never get in trouble, but when he eats the carpet in the apartment he does get a time out—although that doesn’t last very long.
Broadway Barks: What does your dog think about cats?
LoBiondo: Lola and Luca are sporting dogs, so they love to chase cats and squirrels.
Connolly: Abigail and our cat, Harriet Tubman, have arrived at a playful trust built on mutual respect and acceptance.
Zimmerman: Canoli is not a fan of cats. When we are visiting my parents he usually only barks when he sees the cat next door. Otherwise, he is perfectly content being spoiled by his grandparents.
Broadway Barks: What is your favorite activity to do with your dog?
LoBiondo: Tina’s favorite activity is to run on the beach with Lola and Luca three to four times per week. Frank loves to take them to many public events.
Connolly: We spend many hours together reading the Congressional Record.
Zimmerman: Our favorite activity is to go exploring on Roosevelt Island in Washington, DC so that he can dig holes, roll in the mud, and chase birds.
Broadway Barks: What secret does your pet know about you?
LoBiondo: Lola and Luca know that they hit the doggie lottery when they met us and that we can never say “no” to them.
Connolly: Abby knows that I much prefer her to the cat, Harriet Tubman.
Zimmerman: Canoli knows that I’m a huge softy for animals and would adopt an entire zoo if it were possible, but he’ll always be my favorite.
Broadway Barks: Does your pet have a special talent?
LoBiondo: Lola is a cancer survivor and a certified therapy dog. She was diagnosed with bone cancer about one year ago, had ¾ of her lower jaw removed, and underwent chemotherapy. Lola will be part of Shore Memorial Hospital’s Pet Therapy program, and she has participated in several cancer survivor days and has interacted with the children who participate in the Gilda’s Club Noogieland. Lola has many tricks and can speak for treats! Luca is also able to do tricks; his best is giving kisses.
Connolly: Abby can walk on her hind legs for an extraordinary amount of time.
Zimmerman: Believe it or not, Canoli can jump through a hula hoop, and he knows how to “sit pretty” when begging for food. He also knows how to unwrap presents.