• Marcetta Linton

First Dog

In January of 2021, not only will there be a historic first for our country with Kamala Harris, but another member of the Biden family. You heard me right, Joe Biden's dog Major will be the first-ever shelter dog that will occupy the White House. Major was adopted by the Biden's from a Delaware animal shelter. America has embraced the idea that Major will join a list of animals that occupied the White House, including Bill Clinton's cat Socks, George and Laura Bush's dog Barney, and even the Obama's dog Bo.

However, the pet's listed were all from private owners and breeders, where Major came from humble beginnings. 2020 has already seen a surge in adoptions and fostering due to companionship during lockdowns. It has also seen a higher rendering of pets due to financial responsibilities. Pet's are a lifelong commitment, not something that can be tossed to the side. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) estimates that about 3.3 million dogs enter shelters each year. About 670,000 are euthanized, which is a disturbing number and is on the rise. I am the owner of a rescue dog and couldn't think of a better loyal companion. My Beau was a rescue that was abused and over crated. Shelter and rescue dogs require a little more love as you build a relationship, and most don't know how to trust.

Animals have always occupied the White House, and in fact, only two presidents have not had any pets, James Polk and Donald Trump. Let's hope that Major will place a new spotlight on animal shelter dogs, and there will be a surge in the popularity of shelter dogs. A shelter dog is not only more cost-efficient, but it is also more rewarding for both dog and owner.

In 2018, a slogan became popular among various social media platforms. "Adopt don't shop," this meant that you could look and find a pet in a shelter or rescue that is just as wonderful as a breeder. If you are looking for that perfect breed of puppy, you could search for a breed rescue. Shelter pets are on the rise, and all they want is furever homes.

They are not broken or damaged goods; they are animals with a lot of love to give and are misunderstood.

So maybe we could take a page out of Joe Biden's history of pet ownership and look at those sweet shelter pets for your next dog. For more information on various presidential animals, visit http://www.presidentialpetmuseum.com.



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