Michael Bloomberg’s aversion to dogs has been public knowledge for nearly a decade now, following a 2011 New York Times account describing the former mayor’s Scrooge-like reaction to his girlfriend Diana Taylor’s golden Christmas gift of two yellow labs. “The dogs could stay,” Bloomberg reportedly told her, “but she would be looking after them.” After reluctantly accepting the houseguests, Bloomberg would inform visitors who asked about them that they were “Diana’s dogs.”
With his eye — and more importantly, his wallet — trained on winning the Democratic primary, the wealthiest 2020 hopeful apparently hasn’t yet learned to appreciate or treat a candidate’s best friend. (16 of the last 17 presidents have had dogs.) Practicing some retail-politic hand-shaking in Burlington, Vermont, Bloomberg forgot a day-one dog-school lesson: They shake by adorably offering one of their paws, not by submitting a person to tug on their upper jaw.
And according to a photo dug up by Washington Post reporter, Aaron Blake, the greeting appears to be a repeat offense:
If Bloomberg’s historic spending unexpectedly thrusts him to the top of the ballot in November, there will at least be something for the Democratic and Republican candidates to bond over, aside from having literal tons of money. Perhaps more-so than the former mayor, Trump consistently looks uncomfortable around dogs, has no idea what their company is actually for, and once reportedly told his secretary that Mike Pence’s decision to bring his pets to D.C. was “low-class.”