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Reagans Look Gift House in the Mouth

from a Times Staff Writer

White House lawyers are studying federal gift laws to determine whether it would be appropriate for the first dog to accept a lavish White House of his own, complete with parquet flooring, red curtains, a silver bowl filled with jellybeans and dog biscuits and a photograph of President and Mrs. Reagan on the wall.

“The President’s first interest is to know what the mortgage rate is on that house before they accept it,” White House spokesman Larry Speakes joked.

The luxury quarters were commissioned by the Capital Children’s Museum for its annual celebrity dog show. Actress Zsa Zsa Gabor and her dog, Macho, will unveil the structure today as part of the charity fund-raiser.

The House, originally constructed to contain a St. Bernard, is an ample five feet by five feet. It has been refurbished in Nancy Reagan’s favorite decor, down to a window box of red geraniums.

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Interior decorator Theo Hayes did the work. Her husband, Stephen Hayes, is a direct descendant of President Rutherford B. Hayes. The museum is offering the showcase house to the Reagans for Rex, their King Charles spaniel.


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