The 2020 Hero Dog Awards seek to find and recognize dogs who help people in many important ways. Dogs are nominated in one of seven categories: Shelter Dogs, Emerging Hero Dogs, Law Enforcement/Arson Dogs, Therapy Dogs, Military Dogs, Guide/Hearing Dogs, Search and Rescue Dogs.
The Shelter Dog category honors shelter and rescue dogs who are given a new “leash” on life. A shelter or rescue dog can be nominated for overcoming difficult odds, having a remarkable rescue story or for simply brightening the lives of the people who gave them a second chance to be a first-rate pet!
Over the past several weeks I have highlighted six of the seven finalists for Hero Dog Award, sponsored by the American Humane Association. “Dolly Pawton” was nominated in the Service Dog Category, “K-9 Cody” represents the Law Enforcement/Arson category. “Olive” is a Therapy Dog; and “Blue II P491” is a Military Dog. “Aura is a Hearing Dog, and the Human Remains Detection dog “Remington” represents the Search and Rescue Dog category.
The remaining finalist, “MacKenzie,” represents the Shelter Dog category. This little Chihuahua had a struggle from the start. She was born with a cleft palate, which meant she could not eat, drink water or even bark. She had to be tube-fed and survived several lung infections. Finally when she was about a year old, she had life-saving surgery to correct her cleft palate. For the first time she could eat and drink on her own.
In return for the loving care she had received all her young life from the humans at The Mia Foundation (for unwanted and disabled animals), MacKenzie (or “Kenz” to her human friends) instinctively became a little momma to other baby animals with birth defects that might otherwise be euthanized. She would comfort them, cuddle with them, becoming like a mom to young animals with serious medical needs like she had endured. Regardless of their size or even species, “Kenz” taught them how to socialize, and play, and accept the needed care and attention from human caretakers. She began as a rescue dog, but in turn she has helped to rescue hundreds of other animals. Learn more about MacKenzie (and the Mia Foundation) by visiting their Facebook page – search “Love For Mia”.
You can see all the wonderful animals nominated for the 2020 Hero Dog Award by visiting the website at HeroDogAwards.org. Cast your vote for the finalist you think should be America’s Hero Dog - before voting ends Thursday, September 10th! No matter what role they play in our lives, these four-legged heroes deserve our gratitude, when we’re speaking of pets.