President Joe Biden‘s eldest dog, Champ, has died at age 13. The president first confirmed the news of Champ’s death in a statement on Twitter Saturday, saying the family’s “hearts are heavy” over the loss of their beloved four-legged friend. Champ, Biden said, had “passed away peacefully at home.”
In his statement, Biden described Champ, whom they adopted in 2008 shortly after his election as vice president, as a “constant, cherished companion” who was “adored by the entire Biden family.”
“Wherever we were, he wanted to be, and everything was instantly better when he was next to us,” Biden said.
Champ, a German Shepherd, was the eldest of the Biden’s two dogs. In 2018, the Biden family adopted a younger German Shepherd, Major. The pair joined the first family at the White House just days after President Biden’s inauguration.
On Saturday, Biden described Champ as a constant, beloved presence, even in the West Wing. Champ “loved nothing more than curling up at our feet in front of a fire at the end of the day, joining us as a comforting presence in meetings, or sunning himself in the White House garden,” he wrote.
“In our most joyful moments and in our most grief-stricken days, he was there with us, sensitive to our every unspoken feeling and emotion,” Biden continued. “We love our sweet, good boy and will miss him always.”
First Lady Jill Biden later shared a picture of him on social media, adding: “RIP to our sweet, good boy, Champ. We will miss you always.”
Our family lost our loving companion Champ today. I will miss him. pic.twitter.com/sePqXBIAsE
— President Biden (@POTUS) June 19, 2021