Collaring a book by the top dog at the White House

WELL, I'LL BE DOGGONED

September 11, 1990|By Susan Baer | Susan Baer,Washington Bureau of The Sun

Washington Add one more to the roster of books written by White Hous insiders, this latest one especially waggish, especially dogmatic, especially tell-tail.

Already lapping up sales at bookstores is "Millie's Book -- As Dictated to Barbara Bush," the "memoirs" of the Bushes' celebrated First Pet, Mildred Kerr Bush.

Although no sales figures are available yet from the book's publisher, William Morrow & Co., since the official publication date is not until Monday, Mrs. Bush's press secretary Anna Perez says, "I'm told sales are going like gangbusters."

The first lady -- sans dog -- is to launch "Millie's Book" at a reception at New York City's Morgan Library on Wednesday. And both she and Millie are to make the rounds this week on the TV morning shows.

Full of pictures of the liver-and-white Springer spaniel -- posing with everyone from Audrey Hepburn to King Hussein of Jordan to Maryland Representative Helen Bentley's dog Baby Bleep, and frolicking everywhere from the Rose Garden to the Bush bedroom, the $17.95 book traces Millie's life as political pooch, .. beginning with the day she was given to the Bushes by a Texas friend, Feb. 13, 1987.

In a startling confession, Millie reveals Mrs. Bush's words to her -- on the spaniel's first night with the Bush clan.

"Bar did whisper to me that night, 'You are so sweet, but you are so ugly. You have a pig's nose, you are bowlegged, and your eyes are yellow.' I knew immediately that I was going to have to try harder."

The book, proceeds of which are to be donated to The BarbarBush Foundation for Family Literacy, also describes the barking that ensued after Washingtonian magazine chose Millie as the ++ Ugliest Dog in its "best and worst" issue.

Senator Robert and Labor Secretary Elizabeth Dole's dog Leader, for instance, issued a press release calling the magazine item an "'arf'front to dogs everywhere."

.` Although Millie has been suffering from lupus, a degenerative disease that attacks tissues, Ms. Perez says she's "in complete remission. She's doing fine."

In fact, she's eagerly awaiting reviews and busy "pawtographing" copies of her book for her many fans, furry and otherwise.

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