Major Biden gets special training to prepare for arrival of White House cat
WASHINGTON - Dr. Jill Biden said a family cat will be coming to the White House "pretty soon," after the younger of the Bidens’ two German shepherds, Major, received special feline training.
"She's waiting in the wings," the first lady told NBC News in an interview broadcast Friday.
Jill Biden said the family’s 3-year-old dog Major was being trained for the arrival of the cat. Major has been involved in two biting incidents as President Joe Biden and the first lady have gotten settled into their new Washington, D.C. home.
"That was part of his training," the first lady told NBC News. "They took him into a shelter with cats. He did fine."
In March, the White House confirmed that Major had nipped someone during a walk. And shortly before that incident, Major caused what the White House said was a minor injury to a Secret Service employee.
Both Major and the family’s other German shepherd, 12-year-old Champ, spent time back in Delaware after the first incident. The White House said it was because the first lady would be traveling for a few days, and the president said Major was being trained.
The dog did end up receiving private training for a few weeks, Michael LaRosa, a spokesperson for Jill Biden, confirmed earlier this month.
Major was adopted by the Biden family in 2018 after Delaware Humane Association posted on social media that it received a litter of sick German Shepherd puppies. The Bidens fostered the puppy for several months before making the adoption official.
RELATED: Biden’s dog Major gets own 'indoguration' with performance by Josh Groban
He received his own "indoguration" in January, which included a fundraiser for the shelter from which he was adopted, as well as a performance by singer-songwriter and dog lover Josh Groban.
Major also made headlines last year after a play date with Biden ended when the 78-year-old fractured his right foot.
Champ, who was purchased from a Pennsylvania breeder, has been with the Bidens since 2008.
RELATED: Champ and Major Biden: Meet the first dogs
The dogs are the first pets to call the White House home since President Barack Obama departed in early 2017 with his pups Bo and Sunny. President Donald Trump did not have any pets.
Presidents owning dogs is an American political tradition that dates as far back as the first U.S. President George Washington, who was also a dog lover and breeder.
During Friday’s televised interview, Biden was asked if the cat was his idea.
"No," he replied.
This story was reported from Cincinnati. The Associated Press contributed.