This year-old Havanese pup from Coon Rapids has her own e-mail address, a bed that resembles a miniature Ferrari, more than 200 toys and owners who bring her to work each day. But is Sasha Goc Radivojevic, named after a Minnesota Wild player, America's most pampered pup?
Pawsitively, says one of her owners, Tracy Andrews, who cleared all the coats from a closet to make room for Sasha's toys. But now, a nation fixated on polls has a chance this month to vote on the Internet for Sasha or 11 other pampered pooches, barking for attention and the title "America's Most Pampered Pup."
The contest is sponsored by the Pampered Pup, a designer dog boutique in West Palm Beach, Fla. Sasha -- 7 pounds of fluff -- was voted Pampered Pup of the Month last February, but winning the national annual contest may be more difficult than pronouncing Sasha's full name.
It's not just the other dogs but their owners that Sasha is competing against. Some owners have dedicated Internet sites and MySpace pages to their dogs, said Derek Hovey, owner of the Pampered Pup.
The owner of one contestant works for PGA America and sent e-mails to 100,000 golf enthusiasts, asking them to vote his dog Pup of the Month. The dog won in a landslide, netting more than 20,000 votes that month, Hovey said.
A jersey girl
Sasha's owners, Susan Brendemuhl, whose daughter had a jersey autographed by Wild right wing Branko Radivojevic, and Andrews, an Andover chiropractor, say that a birthday party for Sasha, which drew 18 people to Andrews' office, may be the extent of their campaigning.
"Just look at that face," Brendemuhl, Andrews' office manager and neighbor, said of a face that has been photographed wearing pink sunglasses. "One look at that face and you can see why we never want to leave her alone."
Brendemuhl, who lives with her 24-year-old son, takes Sasha to the chiropractic clinic each morning. Andrews takes Sasha home. Then Brendemuhl, who lives in the same complex, picks up Sasha for the night.
They purchased Sasha when she was 4 weeks old from a Maplewood breeder for $1,800 -- even though they weren't allowed to take Sasha home for another five weeks.
"People look at us like we're crazy," Andrews said of Sasha, now 16 months old. "If I had it, I'd pay $18 million for her."
Now Brendemuhl and Andrews hope Sasha will be worth the vote of folks turning to the Pampered Pup website, www.thepamperedpup.com.
Paul Levy • 612-673-4419