First dog Millie's half-dozen puppies went on display for the White House press corps Wednesday as President Bush and his wife Barbara looked on admiringly and chatted with reporters.

"First time they've been out of that room" where they were delivered by Millie, a springer spaniel, two weeks ago, Bush said as he joined Barbara in the Rose Garden.The puppies - five females and a male - hovered close to the neatly cropped grass - their eyes closed - as the president and his wife talked of their experience with the litter and the dogs' mother.

"We've got one boy and five girls," Mrs. Bush said. "Everybody knows it's better to have five girls than five boys," she joked.

"It's really been wonderful, very interesting," the president said.

The Bushes have decided to give the puppies away to some of their 11 grandchildren - apparently on a first-bid, first-serve basis.

Mrs. Bush said the children claiming the puppies will have the right to name them and that so far, only one - "Pickles" - has been spoken for.