Maltese Terrier
Trouble the Maltese Terrier was one wealthy dog. Image: / Bistrosavage/Flickr/CC BY

Trouble, late real estate mogul Leona Helmsley’s Maltese Terrier, has died in Florida at the age of 12. The pampered pooch inherited $2 million when Helmsley died in 2007.

Died six months ago

Though Trouble passed away Dec. 13, according to trust spokeswoman Eileen Sullivan the news was made public on Thursday morning, nearly six months after the fact. Trouble was cremated, despite Helmsley’s request that the dog be interred next to her in her 12,000-square-foot mausoleum in New York’s Sleepy Hollow cemetery. Cemetery regulations forbid the interment of animals there.

Two children cut out of will

Trouble was purchased at a Manhattan pet store to console Helmsley after the death of her husband Harry in 1997. The dog was always at her side until her death. She had wanted to leave Trouble $12 million upon her death, but a judge lowered that amount to $2 million. Meanwhile, two of Helmsley’s own children were left out of the will entirely.

A full-time bodyguard

The conditions of Trouble’s inheritance included $8,000 a year for grooming and $12,000 for food. Trouble also had a full-time personal bodyguard because of the dozens of kidnapping and death threats the dog received since the inheritance.

The queen of mean

Helmsley was known in the press as “the Queen of Mean,” and was once quoted as saying that “only the little people pay taxes.” She served 21 months in prison for federal tax evasion.

Cared for by hotel manager

Since her owner’s death, Trouble had been cared for by the general manager of Helmsley’s Sandcastle Hotel in Sarasota, Fla. Although the exact cause of death was not disclosed, Trouble was blind when she died and had been in weak health. The balance of the dog’s inheritance has reverted to The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust. Sullivan has declined to comment on how much was left of that inheritance.

Sources

MSNBC: http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/43339983/ns/today-today_pets_and_animals/

N.Y. Post: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/helmsley_dog_trouble_dies_in_fla_7Hh8FTBhG97hpfKRFRv6tI

Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/huff-wires/20110609/us-helmsley-s-trouble/

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