I can imagine that it is hard to keep a pet in the White House. The building is not a standard home, but rather a freakish mishmash of poorly-planned office building, historical museum, and fortified bunker that happens to have some living spaces attached. There are hundreds, if not thousands of people coming in and out at all times, hundreds of doors and rooms and grounds, and to top it off, the people who usually own White House pets are basically too busy to pay any attention to them.
These are valid excuses for poor behavior, but it still must be said: Joe Biden’s two dogs are very bad boys.
This point, plainly stated, may cause you to recoil in disgust. It is popular, these days, to adopt the philosophical position that all dogs are inherently good, and that criticizing them is folly. I am partially on board with the first part of that: like humans, I think that every living thing brought into this world has the potential to do good works, despite their circumstances of nature or nurture. And yet, many do not. Some of those living things are dogs, who grow up to be bad boys. Refusing to acknowledge this truth — that some pets suck, and you don’t want to be around them — speaks to a soft naivety that I believe has no place in our unfair world of harsh realities.
Let us consider the evidence:
Major, Biden’s 3-year-old rescued German Shepherd, has now bitten two federal employees—a Secret Service agent and a National Parks Service worker. Major is “still adjusting to his new surroundings,” First lady Jill Biden’s press secretary Michael LaRosa told CNN, which is understandable, for all the reasons listed above. However. I would not want to be around Major Biden. I am sure he is deserving of love, and of a gentle home somewhere that is not the White House.
Consider also this:
My colleague Rafi Schwartz tells me that this was likely Champ, the elder German Shepherd, as older dogs, particularly of purebred varieties, often have health issues or struggle with incontinence. Again, it is probably not Champ’s fault that he is a bad boy — rather it’s a structural problem that we, as Americans, tend to elect the kind of people who get purebred dogs that are cursed by their Hapsburg-ass genetics to shit and bite too much.
In fact, per a cursory search of Wikipedia, you have to go all the way back to Lyndon B. Johnson to find a presidential dog that was a true mongrel (Jimmy Carter had a border collie mix that was quickly removed from the White House for snapping at multiple people). Here’s what the LBJ Presidential Library says about Yuki, the last presidential mutt:
That is a good dog. That is what a dog should be. But like many Americans, the Bidens own dogs who kind of suck. People can be blind when it comes to things they love — I do not fault the Bidens for foisting their shitty pets on the country. But it is the job of the media to hold power to account, just as it is your job to privately shit-talk your friend’s terrible pet behind their back every once in a while. It must be said. The truth demands to be heard. The Biden dogs are bad boys.