President of Ireland's Dog Steals the Show During TV Interview

A video of the President of Ireland's seven-month-old Bernese mountain dog demanding attention during an interview has gone viral, delighting hundreds of thousands of social media users.

The clip of President Michael D. Higgins giving a TV interview while his puppy stole the show by begging for attention has been viewed more than 250,000 times on TikTok and more than 860,000 times on Twitter.

The Irish president was paying tribute to the late actor Tom Hickey, who died on Saturday, while his dog sat at his side playfully biting his hand and pawing at his side, demanding to be petted. The president remained focused on the interview, however, but offered up his hand as a chew toy.

RTE News journalist Sinéad Crowley shared the TikTok video on Twitter and said: "There was a lot going on in our RTE News interview yesterday."

There was a lot going on in our @rtenews interview yesterday #rtenewsbehindthescenes @PresidentIRL @PaulDeighano

— Sinéad Crowley (@SineadCrowley) May 3, 2021

Irish actor Donal O'Kelly replied to Crowley and said: "Michael D. was talking about his lifelong friend, actor Tom Hickey, who passed away the evening before. The dog presumably picked up on his deep sense of grief. And I think he finds it comforting. It's a wonderful moment."

The Bernese mountain dog, named Misneach, which translates as courage, joined the Higgins family in March. Misneach became the newest member of the family following the death of Higgins' Bernese mountain dog Síoda in September.

Misneach has already won thousands of fans with his scene-stealing appearance, as social media users are charmed by his playful nature.

However, this is not the first time one of the Irish president's dogs has gone viral. Higgins' other dog Bród, which means pride, won hearts at the International Women's Day event in Dublin in March 2020, when he ran around the room demanding attention before lying on his back at Higgins' side expecting a belly rub.

An "official unofficial account" dedicated to the Higgins dogs on Twitter has more than 24,000 followers.

It is no surprise that Higgins opted for a third Bernese Mountain Dog following the passing of Síoda, as the breed is known for being good-natured and affectionate.

"Big, powerful, and built for hard work, the Bernese Mountain Dog is also strikingly beautiful and blessed with a sweet, affectionate nature," says the American Kennel Club, adding, "Berners are generally placid but are always up for a romp with the owner, whom they live to please."

Bernese mountain dog
A Bernese mountain dog. The President of Ireland's dog has gone viral for demanding attention during a TV interview. josianefarand/Getty