02/25/2013 12:45 pm ET Updated Feb 25, 2013

Dakota Conrad Dead: Former Senator Kent Conrad's Dog Dies

Dakota, the bichon frise of former Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) who was a fixture around Capitol Hill, died Wednesday of complications from lymphoma, according to the Fargo-based newspaper The Forum.

The dog apparently played a role in some crucial negotiations on the Hill. "In some of our (budget) negotiations, colleagues would call and ask if I could bring Dakota," Congrad told the paper. "He calmed everyone down."

"I think he will be missed perhaps more than I am as I leave the Senate," he said of the dog when he left the Senate in December 2012.

Conrad adopted the dog in 2009 from a rescue shelter when he was about 10, according to the AP.

Barney Bush, the dog of the former 43rd president and first lady, passed away in February.

Conrad was often spotted on Capitol Hill walking his dog.

"He was such a jaunty, confident and happy little dog," Conrad told the Forum. "And he was cute -- he just put a smile on people’s faces. And so that’s how I’ll remember him."



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