An exotic dog groomed to look like a lion became America’s favorite pet this week.
Featured on TV literally from early morning to late at night, you couldn’t miss the lion-like Labradoodle of Norfolk, Va., whose bushy lion-esque mane was so alarming to some of the city’s residents that they called police to report that a baby lion was on the loose.
And, since videotape of this cagey canine was readily available, it became the subject of news reports and late-night comedy bits from coast to coast over several days.
In case you are unfamiliar with this breed, Labradoodles are dogs bred from Labradors and poodles. They are nowhere near as large as lions, nor are they commonly groomed to resemble them.
But this particular Lab-Doo, a male named Charles the Monarch, was groomed purposely to resemble the legendary King of the Jungle (albeit in miniature). In addition to its lion-like mane, the pooch also sports a lion’s long tufted tail.
We first spied this lion lookalike on “The Today Show” on NBC — in the video clip above.
The story proved to be so popular that “The Today Show” ran another brief story on it the very next morning:
Not to be outdone, by week’s end, the famed Lab-Doo turned-lion became the subject of comedy bits on the late-night shows, such as the one you’ll see in this next clip from Jay Leno’s monologue on Friday night’s “Tonight Show.”