Andrew Cuomo Fends Off One Last Controversy

Outgoing governor under fire over report he left his dog behind at mansion
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 23, 2021 8:25 AM CDT
Updated Aug 23, 2021 10:25 AM CDT
On Cuomo's Final Day, One Last Controversy
In this February 2018 photo, the governor holds his new dog, Captain.   (Mike Groll/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo via AP)

Monday is Andrew Cuomo's final day as the governor of New York state, but he's not escaping without one last batch of negative headlines. The Albany Times Union reports that Cuomo left his dog behind at the governor's mansion after moving in with his sister in Westchester County in recent days. Cuomo's office says the report is misleading, but the governor is taking all kinds of online venom from dog lovers.

  • The dog: Cuomo adopted Captain in 2018, and the large shepherd mix is apparently a handful. "High-strung" is how the Albany newspaper diplomatically puts it. The report says Cuomo has been asking staffers at the mansion if they want to keep Captain permanently. One staffer reportedly tried but brought him back.

  • Denial: Cuomo spokesman Richard Azzopardi slammed the report and said Cuomo is looking for a "temporary" caregiver because he's going on vacation. "Someone offered to watch [Captain] for a few days while the transition was ongoing, but for that to be weaponized and morph from a game of telephone into the pages of your paper is absurd—now excuse us, we're preparing for a major storm," he said in a statement, per Fox News. The storm he mentioned was Tropical Storm Henri.
  • Reaction: The executive director of the state's Animal Protection Federation declared that Captain "deserves better." Libby Post said she read the Times Union's report that Cuomo moved out of the mansion sans dog "with disbelief," adding that various shelters would be able to help Captain with the "nipping" issues he apparently has. Others online were a lot angrier toward Cuomo.
  • Now what: Cuomo is officially out at 11:59pm. Maybe successor Kathy Hochul wants a dog?
(More Andrew Cuomo stories.)

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