Champ, one of the two family dogs of Joe Biden, has died, the US President announced on Saturday. “We love our sweet, good boy and will miss him always,” the US President and first lady remembered their companion for 13 years on Twitter.
The Bidens had Champ – a German Shepherd, living with them since 2008, when Joe Biden was serving as the US Vice President under Barack Obama. The Bidens have another German Shepherd – Major, who is the first animal from an animal rescue shelter to live in the White House.
“He was our constant, cherished companion during the last 13 years and was adored by the entire Biden family,” the president said. “Even as Champ’s strength waned in his last months, when we came into a room, he would immediately pull himself up, his tail always wagging, and nuzzle us for an ear scratch or a belly rub,” the US President and the first lady, Jill Biden, said in a heartfelt note.
Our family lost our loving companion Champ today. I will miss him. pic.twitter.com/sePqXBIAsE
— President Biden (@POTUS) June 19, 2021
The arrival of Champ and Major marked the return of pets to the White House after a four-year hiatus under former President Donald Trump, who was the first president since Andrew Johnson in the 1860s not to share the presidential digs with a dog or a cat.
“When we came into a room, he would immediately pull himself up, his tail always wagging, and nuzzle us for an ear scratch or a belly rub,” the statement continued.
When Champ was younger, they said, he was “happiest chasing golf balls on the front lawn of the Naval Observatory or racing to catch our grandchildren as they ran around our backyard in Delaware.”
After Joe Biden won the US Presidential Election, a Twitter account dedicated to the first dogs of the US revealed that the two are looking forward to “playing all day and receiving countless treats” at the White House.