Biden later drew upon the phrase when selecting a name for Champ.
The Bidens continued: "He loved nothing more than curling up at our feet in front of a fire at the end of the day, joining us as a comforting presence in meetings, or sunning himself in the White House garden". The Trump family did not have any domestic animals.
"He was our constant, cherished companion during the last 13 years and was adored by the entire Biden family", the president and first lady wrote in a statement announcing his death.
Netizens poured out their condolences over the Biden family.
The Bidens got Champ from a breeder after Biden was elected vice president in 2008.
"Wherever we were, he wanted to be, and everything was instantly better when he was next to us", they said in a statement.
But within six weeks of taking office, the dogs were briefly sent back to DE for extra training after Major, the younger of the pair, bit a member of White House security. The Bidens are spending the weekend at their home in Delaware. The family adopted him eight months later.
The Bidens could occasionally be seen walking their two dogs on the White House South Lawn, and the dogs sometimes would join the president on trips to Camp David or visits home in Delaware. A second biting incident occurred shortly afterwards.
He had also lived in Washington when Mr Biden was vice-president. "So that's what I've been obsessed with, getting everybody settled and calm", she said. They starred in a Christmas video greeting from the Bidens, and were the subject of a children's book, "Champ and Major: First Dogs". The First Lady revealed in April that the couple have a female cat "waiting in the wings". Then-Vice President Biden purchased the German Shepard as a gift to his wife after Obama won the 2008 presidential election.
The First Lady also paid tribute to the pet, tweeting: "RIP to our sweet, good boy, Champ".