President Joe Biden's two German shepherds are in the "doghouse" after the youngest dog, Major, caused a "minor injury" to an "unfamiliar person" who surprised him, according to White House press secretary Jen Psaki.
First reported by CNN, Champ and Major were sent to the Bidens' home in Wilmington, Delaware, though Psaki said the visit was previously planned due to first lady Dr. Jill Biden traveling this week. They are being cared for by family friends, according to Psaki.
Psaki told reporters at a press briefing Tuesday that Major was "surprised by an unfamiliar person and reacted in a way that resulted in a minor injury to the individual," but .
"No further treatment was needed," she added, noting that the two dogs "are still getting acclimated and accustomed to their new surroundings and people."
Jill Biden has been trying to get the German shepherds settled into new routines at the White House, which can be a hard place even for a human to get used to. The president said a few weeks ago that he’s still getting used to the trappings of his office.
“I’ve been obsessed with getting our dogs settled because we have (an) old dog and we have a very young dog,” the first lady told talk-show host Kelly Clarkson in a recent interview.
“They have to take the elevator. They’re not used to that. They have to go out on the South Lawn with lots of people watching them,” she said. “So, you know, that’s what I’ve been obsessed with, just getting everybody settled and calm.”
Major, who is about 3 years old, burst onto the national scene late last year after Biden broke a bone in his right foot when he slipped during playtime with the dog at their home near Wilmington.
The Bidens adopted Major in 2018 from the Delaware Humane Association.
They got Champ, who at age 13 is less spry and likely calmer, from a breeder. He joined the family after Joe Biden was elected vice president in 2008.
The dogs moved to the White House shortly after the inauguration in January.
White House furniture is off limits, but Major has showed his disobedient side. “I caught him on the couch the other day, but he quickly jumped down,” the first lady told Clarkson in last month’s interview. The dogs are allowed to run around the South Lawn, she said.
Their favorite spot is “wherever we are. Even if my door’s closed, they’re sitting right outside the door like, ‘Let me in, let me in,’” Jill Biden said.
CNN, citing unidentified sources, reported that the dogs were sent back to Delaware after Major had what was described as a “biting incident” with an unidentified member of White House security. Psaki declined to identify the individual on Tuesday.
It was unclear how serious the incident was, but it appears to have been concerning enough to warrant removing the dogs from the White House.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.