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Dog days at the White House: Champ and Major Biden come to D.C.

The German shepherds arrived on Sunday, ending the longest stretch the White House has gone without pets since the 1800s

It's been less than a week since Joe Biden was sworn in as president, and his White House is already going to the dogs.

"Champ and Major have joined us at the White House!" first lady Jill Biden tweeted Monday.

The German shepherds arrived at the White House on Sunday, a spokesman for Jill Biden said. The move ends a four-year dog drought at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Champ Biden joined the president and the first lady at the White House on Jan. 24, 2021.Adam Schultz / Official White House photo
Major Biden joined the President and the first lady at the White House on Jan. 24, 2021.Adam Schultz / Official White House photo

"The First Family wanted to get settled before bringing the dogs down to Washington from Delaware," Jill Biden's office said, noting that the pair are adjusting to their new life quickly. "Champ is enjoying his new dog bed by the fireplace and Major loved running around on the South Lawn." her office said.

The Bidens got now-elder statesman Champ as a puppy in 2008, shortly before they moved into the vice president's official residence at the Naval Observatory. Biden drew inspiration for his name from his father, who would tell him, "Any time you get knocked down, champ — get up!"

Champ and Major Biden joined the President and the first lady at the White House on Jan. 24, 2021.Adam Schultz / Official White House photo

Major, meanwhile, is the first shelter dog to enjoy life in the White House.

Major Biden joined the President and the first lady at the White House on Jan. 24, 2021.Adam Schultz / Official White House photo

The Bidens adopted him from the Delaware Humane Association in 2018 after he and five other puppies were exposed to a toxic substance. Biden hasn't spoken publicly about Major's name, but the president-elect's late son Beau Biden was a major in the Delaware National Guard.

The playful pair may have some more company soon - the Bidens have said they plan on getting a cat as well. Asked for an update on a possible first feline, Jill Biden's spokesman Michael LaRosa told NBC News, "stay tuned!"

The animal additions are of particular note because Donald Trump was the first president not to have a pet since Andrew Johnson in the 1860s, according to the Presidential Pet Museum.

Past presidents haven't confined themselves to having dogs and cats — Calvin Coolidge had a donkey and a bobcat, Teddy Roosevelt had a badger, a flying squirrel and a one-legged rooster, and John Quincy Adams had an alligator, a gift from the Marquis de Lafayette, the pet museum said.