Dogs (Back) in the White House

A photo of Major, a German Shepherd, is surrounded by drawings of flags and a podium

After four long years, there are once again dogs in the White House! That’s a clear sign of better times ahead. No one can effectively perform a stressful job without at least one dog by their side.

President and Dr. Biden have two German Shepherd dogs. While Cali and I think they ought to have at least one Golden Retriever, we agree that GSDs are better than no dogs.

Champ, the senior dog, might weigh in on whether the White House is preferable to the vice-president’s residence, One Observatory Circle, where he lived as a young dog.

Major, not quite 3 years old, was adopted from a shelter near the Bidens’ home in Delaware in 2018 as a young puppy. He’s the first shelter dog to reside in the White House. The shelter has celebrated their young alum’s fame and fortune, throwing him an Indoguration party and launching a children’s book dedicated to Major and his big brother, Champ.

Pets in the White House are a longstanding tradition; you can find a full list on the website of the Presidential Pet Museum. While mostly dogs and a few cats, some presidents had more unusual pets, such as President Hoover’s son’s alligators.

According to the New York Times, presidential dogs have helped former leaders through some tough times and helped them improve their image.

As anyone who lives with a dog knows, that’s just the beginning. Life with dogs is just better. And I certainly feel a lot better knowing that Champ and Major will be helping their humans run things from now on.


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