Presidential pets: 20 White House dogs and cats of years gone by

As Champ and Major Biden take on their roles as First Dogs, here's a look back at pets of presidents past

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Champ and Major Biden have made it to the White House. This week, President Biden and First Lady Dr Jill Biden's two dogs moved into their new Washington home.

This isn't Champ's first stint as a political pup; the dog, 12, was a part of the family when President Biden served as vice president from 2009 to 2017.

Major, 3, however, is a newer arrival. The energetic   German shepherd was adopted by the family in late 2018 from the Delaware Humane Association's shelter – he is famously the first rescue animal to take residence at the White House.

President Biden's dogs move into the White House

President Biden's dogs move into the White House

While the pair of German shepherds might be the newest pets to take residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, they are certainly not the first.

From the Obamas' Portuguese water dogs, Sunny and Bo, who resided at the White House during Barack Obama's presidency, to Gerald Ford's golden retriever, Liberty, and Socks, Bill Clinton's family cat, here we look back at some of the most memorable animals to move into the White House.

Click though the gallery above to see some presidential pets from years gone by. 

Donald Trump was the first US president to not take a pet into the White House for more than 150 years. He was the first president since James K Polk (1845-1849) not to bring in a furry family friend.

Other, not pictured, animals that have lived at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue include Jack the turkey, saved from the cooking pot by Abraham Lincoln; Whiskers the goat, who lived with Benjamin Harrison; and Theodore Roosevelt's innumerable pets, including a one-legged rooster and a badger named Josiah.