MANILA--The persistent barking of a "hungry puppy" on Wednesday temporarily halted a Senate panel discussion, sending senators laughing and asking a resource person to "feed" her pooch.
Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) representative Faye Condez was answering Sen. Grace Poe's query when her dog, Solo, began yapping during an August 26 hearing, coinciding with the commemoration of the International Dog Day.
"I'm sorry, attorney. Someone's puppy is hungry. Turn off your mic or feed your dog," Poe, the Senate Committee on Banks, Financial Institutions and Currencies, told attendees of the online hearing on how a proposed law could cushion banks from bad loads.
"I actually placed him outside so he won't bother me, but now he's there," she said.
Senators Franklin Drilon, Imee Marcos, Ralph Recto and Sonny Angara were seen giggling at the unexpected interruption.
Condez repeatedly apologized to the lawmakers, saying she left her pet outside to make sure that the he does not disturb her during the online meeting.
"It's his time to eat. I apologize," she said.
"They can just submit the report so the puppy can eat," Angara said in jest, prompting another round of laughs from the senators.
"Can you show the puppy so we'll have some relief? Get your puppy," Poe told Condez.
The PCC representative did not bring Solo into view, but continued with her statement about their study related to the proposed Financial Institutions Strategic Transfer (FIST) law.
Recto was seen on screen carrying a dog on his lap, to the delight of Poe.
"Oh!" Poe said while smiling, waving and blowing kisses at Recto's pet who appeared on screen.
Condez ended her statement with another apology for Solo's incessant barking that disrupted the hearing.
"No, it's OK," Poe said.
"This is the new normal that we are dealing with and we're all very forgiving when it comes to that," the senator said.
The hearing ended around 12 noon, just in time for the puppy's lunch.