The White House welcomed a new puppy named Commander on Monday, but also admitted that President Joe Biden’s rescue dog Major had been sent to a new home after a biting scandal.
Major, who made history in January as the first rescue dog to come live at the executive mansion, was sent to live with unidentified friends of the Biden family. He bit a Secret Service agent and a National Park Service employee during his time at the Executive Residence.
‘After consulting with dog trainers, animal behaviorists, and veterinarians, the First Family has decided … it would be safest for Major to live in a quieter environment with family friends,’ the first lady’s spokesman Michael LaRosa confirmed to New York Times reporter Katie Rogers on Monday.
‘This is not in reaction to any new or specific incident, but rather a decision reached after several months of deliberation as a family and discussions with experts,’ LaRosa added.
The news of Major’s ousting came as Biden tweeted a photo welcoming the new pup home, and it was revealed he is planning to welcome a cat to his Washington DC home in January.
‘Welcome to the White House, Commander,’ the president captioned the picture which showed the German Shepherd puppy a tennis ball in his mouth, bounding around the White House’s fenced enclosure.
The new addition comes nearly six months to the day since the Bidens’ beloved 13-year-old German Shepherd Champ passed away.
The president also tweeted a video of Commander on Monday, greeting the puppy with a ‘Hey pal, how you doing?’
In the video, Biden plays fetch with the dog, walks him on a leash into the White House, with First Lady Jill Biden at his side, and feeds him a treat with the White House’s Christmas decorations on display in the background.
In recent weeks, the president has had to deal with massive COVID spikes thanks to the Omicron variant, falling poll numbers, a tense situation on the Russia-Ukraine border and a member of his own party blowing up his Build Back Better social spending bill.
The Bidens are also adopting a cat.
First Lady Jill Biden said in April that the cat is ‘waiting in the wings.’
The White House’s previous occupant, former President Donald Trump, never had a presidential pet.
Former President Barack Obama brought Bo, Portuguese Water Dog, to the White House in April 2009.
He had promised daughters Sasha and Malia they could get a dog for enduring his 2008 presidential campaign.
The Obamas got a second Portuguese Water Dog, Sunny, in August 2013.