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Bidens say new cat will join them at White House soon: 'She's waiting in the wings'

The Bidens' cat will be the first to live in the White House since George W. Bush's family cat, India.
/ Source: TODAY

President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden provided an important White House pet update during an exclusive interview with Craig Melvin that aired Friday on TODAY.

The couple said a new cat will soon be joining their German shepherds, Major and Champ, as four-legged members of the first family. Asked by Craig about the cat adoption, Jill Biden responded, "She is waiting in the wings," revealing the sex of their new addition and implying her arrival is imminent.

The first feline will move into the White House on the heels of two biting incidents in March involving Major, the Bidens' rescue dog, at the presidential residence. Nobody was injured in either of those incidents, though after the first, Major and Champ returned to the Bidens' home in Delaware so Major could receive some additional training.

"So let me get this straight," Craig quipped. "Major Biden, who's clearly had some trouble adjusting to life at the White House, now he's going to be forced to contend with a cat as well in the White House."

Jill Biden then explained that part of Major's training involved spending time in a shelter with cats to prepare for his new companion.

"He did fine," she added.

President Biden also joked that he was going to bring Major to meet Craig, but the TODAY co-host hesitated.

"Well, I don't know if that's the best idea based on what I've heard about Major," he said. "Is he back in the White House?"

"He's back," the first lady answered, adding that the training has worked and Major "is such a sweet, lovable dog."

The Bidens first confirmed in late November to CBS News that they were planning to welcome a cat. Jill Biden teased the news in September, prior to her husband's election, during an interview with Fox 5 in Washington, D.C., saying, "I’d love to get a cat. I love having animals around the house."

While Major and Champ are the first dogs to live in the White House since the Obamas' Portuguese water dogs, Bo and Sunny, it's been since George W. Bush was in office that a cat prowled the premises. The Bush daughters named their family cat India. Jimmy Carter's daughter also had a Siamese cat named Misty Malarky Ying Yang, and Bill Clinton and his family had a cat named Socks. Major Biden is the first rescue dog ever to live in the White House.