President Joe Biden's German Shepherds Featured in New Kid's Book: Champ and Major
Champ and Major follows the president's "first dogs" as they live with their parents in the White House
President Joe Biden's German shepherds Champ and Major are just starting their White House journey, but their first dog adventures are already being memorialized.
A new children's book, Champ and Major: First Dogs by Joy McCullough, was released on Tuesday. The book follows the president's "first dogs" as they live with their dad in the White House. In the pages, Champ, who joined the former vice president's family in 2008, shows three-year-old Major the lay of the land.
Adding to the excitement: Major has made presidential pet history by becoming the first shelter dog to move into the White House!
"Rescue animals give us the chance to exercise compassion and welcome creatures in need of safe, loving homes," McCullough tells PEOPLE in an exclusive statement. "What better place to demonstrate these values for young readers than the president's home?"
Champ and Major, illustrated by Sheyda Abvabi Best, also includes information about adopting shelter pets, millions of which are in need of homes all across the U.S.
"Make sure you're a good fit: Many shelters offer the option to foster a dog first, as the Bidens did with Major," writes McCullough. "Then, if the dog turns out to be a good match for your family, you can adopt. If not, the shelter can find a new home for the dog!"
Along with making history, Major is also raising money for his rescue home. The pooch's virtual "indoguration" helped raise more than $200,000 for the Delaware Humane Association (DHA) — the rescue President Biden and Dr. Jill Biden adopted Major from in 2018.
The Zoom event, held on Jan. 17, featured emcee Jill Martin, celebrities like Josh Groban and thousands of animal lovers. The rescue plans to use the donations to provide relief to pet owners struggling to care for their animals during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and to help adoptable pets find wonderful forever homes.
"Our DHA Team is truly astounded by the love and support we have received, in honor of Major," DHA's executive director, Patrick J. Carroll, said in a statement. "We celebrate each and every time one of the animals in our care finds its forever home, and this one calls for a special celebration!"
Now that Major, Champ and their dad — whose inauguration took place on Wednesday — are official residents of the White House, kids can learn about the family's special bond by reading Champ and Major.
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"My social media feed has been full of delighted posts about dogs soon returning to the White House," said Lauri Hornik, president & publisher of Dial Books for Young Readers, in a statement. "This is a news item that even the youngest kids can join in celebrating. How wonderful to be able to publish this darling read-aloud for all of those kids and their parents! Joy McCullough and Sheyda Abvabi have created a picture book that's pure joy."
Champ and Major is on sale now.