How to Buy a (First) Dog

The Obamas can take heed: With 158 canine breeds, finding the ideal pup can be an elusive goal. See where our search ends.

The Obamas are looking to buy a dog? Tell me about it. Ten years ago, my family and I explored the same idea -- and only the "perfect" dog would do. We conducted our search with nary a pollster to gauge public opinion or a single Secret Service agent to drive us from dog show to animal shelter.

Here’s the real-time description of how we researched our choices, and an update on what we decided.

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Jane Bennett Clark
Senior Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance
The late Jane Bennett Clark, who passed away in March 2017, covered all facets of retirement and wrote a bimonthly column that took a fresh, sometimes provocative look at ways to approach life after a career. She also oversaw the annual Kiplinger rankings for best values in public and private colleges and universities and spearheaded the annual "Best Cities" feature. Clark graduated from Northwestern University.