Arlington Pet of the Week: Atlas

by ARLnow.com January 9, 2013 at 1:15 pm 2,116 66 Comments

Our Arlington Pet of the Week this week is Atlas, a 5-year-old miniature goldendoodle described by owner Michaela Hackner as “pretty much the mayor of Arlington.”

Atlas’s larger-than-life personality seems to match his name, if not his stature. Hackner writes:

Not a stranger to fame, Atlas is a 5 year-old, miniature goldendoodle that is pretty much the mayor of Arlington. He can be seen walking with his owner Michaela several times a day, all over the Clarendon and Courthouse neighborhoods. When he’s not watching over the city from his perch at the window, he’s partying at WOOF’s doggy daycare and living it up with his many human friends. He loves playing in fountains, drinking from water fountains, and sniffing out water bowls along the way – but don’t think that he enjoys swimming, he hates getting wet because it makes him look like a drowned rat (which is so uncool)!

People stop him wherever he goes due to his winning personality and happy gait. He can frequently be seen grinning from ear to ear, or acting snarky when the wind is blowing in the wrong direction. He used to be a regular Facebook junkie, but mom took away his iPhone after he ate through one of the silicon cases. He’s also well known for his patented “ninja spin” and expertise in devouring “street morsels”, which are pretty commonly found after a big night in the ARL. (He’d like to ask all readers to leave more pizza on the ground so that he has a chance of snagging some on his morning walk!)

The Arlington Pet of the Week is sponsored by Dogma Bakery, which has locations at The Village at Shirlington (2772 S. Arlington Mill Drive) and the Lee Harrison Shopping Center (2445 N. Harrison Street).

Want your pet to be considered to be the Arlington Pet of the Week? Email [email protected] Each week’s winner receives a $25 Dogma gift card.

  • Dan

    I thought that they were referred to as labradoodles ??

    I know both a grey one and a golden one…..both very nice pooches.

    • ArLater

      Labradoodles = Lab + poodle
      Goldendoodle = Golden retriever + poodle

      Doodles are awesome, very fun dogs!

      • Dan

        Thanks….both are wonderful dogs no matter what they are called !

        • nudles

          Wouldn’t it be called a Goldenoodle?

          The “d’ in “Labradoodle” is from the “labraDor”. Where does the extra “D” come from in Golden Retriever & Poodle?

          • drax

            The “d” comes from “Goldenoodle” sounding even dumber than “Goldendoodle” if that’s even possible.

          • @drax


  • drax

    Labradoodle = Labrador Retriever + Poodle.
    Goldendoodle = Golden Retriever + Poodle.

    • x-arl

      so why isn’t a cocker + poodle a cock- a- doodle?

  • Captain_Obvious

    10:1 odds, next week is another dog…

    • Stephanie Todd

      tsk… tsk… oddsmaker… where do I place my bet?

      but more importantly, where do I claim my winnings??


  • Trolly Troll

    I cant believe they included that pic of Atlas high fiving people after taking a hit from the beer bong. I knew he partied…

  • a

    Instead of featuring a dog who already has a home, why don’t you feature a dog looking for a home at a local shelter? Seems way more productive.

    • Tabs

      Not to mention–this dog is result of trendy breeding. Every pet that’s not a rescue = one more discarded-in-the-trash shelter animal.

      Yes, I feel strongly about this issue.

      • just saying

        My mom’s goldendoodle is a rescue … this isn’t mutually exclusive.

    • We will, in fact, be doing that — once a month.

      • CrystalMikey


  • KalashniKEV

    What is going on here?

    • SomeGuy

      Whereas the site used to be a “labor of love” to bring us local news, as mentioned at the link below, it’s now much more about the money.

      That’s what’s been going on for a while now. And this pet of the week stuff is just another example of that.


      • It shouldn’t come as a surprise that we need to generate revenue in order to provide a competitive wage to our employees and freelancers. It’s not a secret that we need to sell advertisements and sponsorships to survive as a business. The same applies to all television and print news outlets.

        • SomeGuy

          I appreciate your reply.

          I’m not surprised that you need to generate revenue. And it’s not a secret that you advertise. However, some of your efforts are more palatable than others. Examples are the Ask Adam column, which despite being an ad, is also usually a well-written and informative article. Likewise for the Beermonger columns; even though I don’t read them, there’s usually a tidbit or two of information worth gleaning for someone who’s into that stuff.

          I see this “pet of the week” thing as a pure gimmick though. I’m sure some of your readers like it, and that’s fine. But I think the format of this ad cheapens the site. Perhaps if the pet store wants to advertise, they could do a Q&A like Adam does, which would at least serve to inform readers who are interested in pet stories vs. this low-hanging “aww, look at the puppies!” fluff.

          • Our philosophy with sponsored content is that it has to be interesting and/or useful to readers. We think the Pet of the Week is interesting and engaging, and it’s done in partnership with a great locally-owned business. If you have questions for Sheila, the owner of Dogma, I’m sure she would be happy to answer them in person at her stores or here in the comments section.

  • Blue_Whale

    Don’t give a [email protected]*£¥ about pet of the week. Give us real meat, not a cheese sandwich. These fluff pieces just serve this sites profit margin based on page clicks. Also proves some more “look at me” moments for the Arlington snobs. I prefer southern junk yard dogs that protect my local trailer park down south.

    • thebrickwall22

      Seems like you do give a S#@% because you took the time to click the link and write a comment. If you don’t like it, don’t read it, and don’t comment on it. Also, ARLNow brings you very good hyper local coverage, with limited resources, for free. If they need to put in a few fluff pieces to stay in business and to grow, so be it. Your finger can handle a couple extra scrolls on the mouse.

      • Evan

        Brickwall you are wrong, this is complete cheese and guys who voice out is the only way to get the mods and arlnow to understand. Please show us news!

        • CrystalMikey

          No, he/she is right. Guess what everyone, you get to read this site for the astronomical price of FREE. So where’s your authority to complain about what ARLNow posts?

          • Danny

            Crystalmike you are wrong. Sorry I’m not sorry. News,
            Not dogs.

          • ARL’er

            It would have taken Blue Whale an entire 1.2 seconds to scroll past the Pet of the Week post. Very valuable time. Time he will never get back.

        • thebrickwall22

          Apparently CrystalMikey is wrong because Danny said so. No one likes the cheese because Danny and Evan don’t like it. Other people have differing opinions than you. I liked looking through the pictures, it’s a cute dog. I didn’t read the text because I have no interest what the dog does every day. Imagine that – I didn’t read something I have no interest in!

          • Oh no!

            Apparently someone holds a gun to Evan and Danny’s head so they not only go on ArlNow – they click on this feature! Maybe someone in the new ACPD class can take on this horrifying case!

        • Michael H.

          How exactly does the pet of the week feature remove the amount of news shown on the site? It doesn’t.

        • Josh S

          Where did thebrickwall22 say it wasn’t cheese?
          Yes, it’s cheese. Lame. Annoying.
          No, you don’t have to read it and its existence on the site is not the end of the world. It is highly unlikely that ARLNow will choose to forgo this source of revenue unless it truly leads to fewer readers, and I just doubt that will be the case. As others have pointed out, at least you can simply scroll on by and not read it. Far better than other sites where the ads pop up in your face and you have to actively dismiss them. Thankfully, ARLNow is a far cry from being able to get away with that.

      • Dan

        Me thinks he was joking….not a bunch of trailer parks defended by junk yard dogs in these parts but then again, who knows ??

        • Blue_Whale

          Dan wins the golden ticket!!!! Just wanted to spark this sites imagination and voice my opinion of fluff articles!!!!

    • KathyInArlington

      Dear Blue_Whale, instead of complaining about articles that many others may like, why don’t you just read the ones that interest you? Do you read every single article in the Washington Post or The New York TImes? Perhaps you don’t as those newspapers are probably too snobbish for you.

  • Ralph

    Hahahaha! So funny! I thought I was reading a newsblog! Turns out it’s….

    • drax

      Either way, you’re reading, Ralph.

    • Evan

      Seriously! This blog is getting so weak.

      • Really?

        No one is forcing you to read it. God – the whining about this is astounding. Get a hobby or start your own “only hard news” self funded news blog.

        • ARL-VA


          By the reaction of some people here, you’d think the Pet of the Week was some sort of mind control method to get people to steal candy from babies.

  • Not Me

    Not usually a stickler for much but, I’d like to know what water fountain he’s drinking at so that I can never use that one ever again.

    • local homeless guy

      It’s the same one I wash myself in

    • @not me

      I was thinking the same thing…nasty.

  • CW

    Let’s give rich people who pay $5k for a dog even more of an ego boost!

    (I post this and then wonder why I am getting oderatedmay…I know, I know)

    • JamesE

      It was only $4800, brah.

    • sh

      well wanker, my designer-looking dog is a pound rescue, but you would never know looking at the girl. (Sorry to let realty slap you in the face CW.)

      • JamesE

        Does it have a facebook page as well?

      • antagonist

        Anyone whose tried to buy a home in Arlington has had realty slap them in the face.

        • Deadite

          I like what you did there.

      • CW

        Are you implying that you are the owner of the dog in this article? I actually thought you were a bot based on the nonsense posts over at the gas fire article, but this seems to be human-generated.

        • sh

          Poor reading comprehension to infer what does not exist.

          • CW

            Ahh, it all makes sense now. Guess I’ll go back to reverting underneath the rainbow.

          • QTR

            Now that’s funny!

  • Chappy
  • Shamooo

    Been drinking too much Deer Park and not enough Keystones!!! Site has gone to poo. Way too many themed articles and not enough news. Anyone see the 2 sentence article on the Brooklyn turtle??? I like turtles more than dogs. Balloons are fun. Go Redsox!!!!

  • RM

    I think Atlas is awesome. Thanks to arlnow for featuring him. Some of us like to read about happy things now and then.

  • KathyInArlington

    What a lovely animal Atlas is. Great photos! I especially like the 2nd one.

  • Notsurprised

    The comments on this post have been very disturbing and sad. What miserable lives you people must live to consistently complain about something that you’re receiving, by your own choice, for absolutely free. Not all stories here pertain to me. There are people with no interest in what’s going on in the county schools… or who could care less about what new business is opening or closing… or who never ride the metro and don’t care to read about someone throwing themselves on the track and shutting metro down…

    but guess what? it’s not your website. so pick and choose what is of interest to you and stop raining on everyone else’s parade. I’m a pet owner. I submitted both of my pets. It’s been fun and interesting for me to read these. I think they’re cute. And, the people I’ve shared them with (also pet owners) have enjoyed them as well… everyone needs a little “fluff” in their lives… and apparently, some of you need to take that more literally than others! People with pets are happier.

    Fox 5 morning news does a feature every morning showing a picture of a baby. That’s sponsored. Are you all writing letters to them expressing your disdain? Get a life. Get a grip. Then… get over yourself!

    • Arlingtoner

      +1. 100% agree ‘Notsurprised.’ It’s always funny on sites how much people complain about articles THEY click to read. No one forced them to click it. Not just on ARLNOW, happens everywhere. People just love to complain. I’d actually like to see ARLNOW link the comments sections to people’s facebook account (like a lot of websites) which will help clean up the comments sections and keep all those ‘keyboard tough guys’ in check.

    • ARL-VA

      Serious people gotta be serious all the time. Seriously surprised you didn’t understand that. Have to run. I have an important meeting on some serious topics. Meanwhile I’ll be bringing along the W. Post, the W. Times, the Examiner and Washingtonian, none of which have ever posted a fun little article about something other than national politics or crime, ever.

  • LPS4DL

    The only thing wrong with this feature is the usual plethora of surly comments from the usual gang of individuals who leave comments here without giving it much thought. The world is theirs, so heed them or suffer from their drivel…

  • Jake

    Excellent! I love the pet drinking from the public water fountain – nice! Another Arlington resident who cares more about their pet than people.

    • Frank

      Um, you planning on drinking out of the fountain any time soon? You do realize that kind of fountain is not for you to bring your bucket, scoop up water and haul it back to your condo to put in your stainless steel french door counter depth refrigerator dont you?

      • Frank

        My apologies, just saw the other fountain. Too quick to judge….

  • Jake – give it a break. Please!!!!

    Notsurprised is absolutely correct.

    I think Atlas is just adorable – and yes, pets get thirsty too!

    My dog is sitting on my lap as I look at the photos and she is watching them with great interest. I think she thinks Atlas is a doll – as do I!!!!

    Thanks for the smiles Atlas and Arlnow.

  • Soarlslacker

    Dogs(cats, pets) are much more pleasant than many people. I’d rather see and read about dogs than some of folks that post their snarky comments here.

    • BigBadBabyTwinkle

      Dear Soarlslacker – You sound like an interesting Human.
      I mice-elf would rather read about cats. And Mice.


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