News & Politics

Top Dog, Top Cat: Winners of Washingtonian’s Cutest Pet Contest

Readers pick Washington’s cutest dog and cat.

Barkley, a goldendoodle, gets compliments on his smile. People like Edmund’s green eyes. Photographs by Paul Morse.

This contest has ended. Thank you for your interest!

In February, we asked readers to vote for Washington’s cutest dog and cat. Competition was fierce—more than 5,000 votes came in. The winners? Barkley, a 15-month-old goldendoodle, and Edmund, a three-year-old part Bengal.

Barkley, a golden-retriever/poodle hybrid, lives on Capitol Hill with owner Stephanie Weir, an accounting manager. Weir always had cats until she fell in love with a coworker’s goldendoodle and decided to get her own.

Describe Barkley’s personality. He’s a character. When he meets someone, he rolls over on his back like, “Here I am. I just want to be your friend.”

How do you keep his coat looking nice? Conditioner, conditioner, conditioner. The curls are cute but difficult. He doesn’t shed, so you have to comb him to get the hair out.

What’s his biggest indulgence? Bully sticks are his favorite treats—they’re like rawhide, just healthier—but he wants whatever I’m eating. I’m pretty good about not giving in.

What’s his favorite toy? My cat. They attack each other and wrestle. He gets a squeaky toy, finds the cat, and squeaks and squeaks. It drives the cat crazy.

What’s the cutest thing he does? My neighbors say he sits by the window all day and watches everybody. When he sees me, he waits by the door.

What’s his most annoying habit? He doesn’t like it when I’m on the laptop, so he paws at it. Five keys are missing.

Does Barkley have a girlfriend? Just last week, I got a note from a lady who wants to have a play date. We have the same dogwalker. Her dog, Stella, is a Wheaten terrier, and they hit it off.

Has stardom changed him? Everybody knows him as “Barkley from The Washingtonian.” He thinks everyone is supposed to love him.

Edmund, who lives in Falls Church with owner Rosemary George, was adopted from a rescue litter as a kitten. “He chose me,” says George. “He wouldn’t let go.”

Is Edmund more like Garfield or Puss in Boots? He’s a charmer like Puss in Boots. He knows how to get what he wants—which is to be held and petted. When he was a kitten he climbed up my leg, but now he just jumps.

What’s the cutest thing he does? Lying upside down on the cabinets. He kind of waves at me with his front leg.

What’s the most annoying? He wants to be cuddled at inappropriate times. He expects you to catch him. If you don’t, he’ll dig in his claws and hang on. It’s 15 pounds of cat hanging off you, and he won’t let go.

Describe Edmund’s perfect day. It would start with breakfast, then he’d follow the sun from window to window around the house. Then he’d play a game of tag with a laser pointer, have more food, perhaps some catnip, and a long cuddle.

What would surprise people about him? He has seven toes on both of his front feet. I didn’t notice it for a while.

Has stardom changed his life? It’s changed mine—I’ve gotten e-mails from people in Florida, New Hampshire, California, Wisconsin, and Kentucky.