Nominations for AKC Hero Awards Open Through July 31st

June 27, 2018 · Print This Article

To celebrate the dogs who do extraordinary things in the service of humankind, the AKC Humane FundSM is seeking YOUR nominations for its AKC Humane Fund Awards for Canine Excellence (ACE). Nominations are now open and winners will be announced in fall 2018.

Each year, the AKC Humane Fund pays tribute to five dedicated, hardworking dogs for making significant contributions to an individual or entire community. Since its creation in 2000, 90 ACE awards have been presented to dogs of various breeds, including one mixed-breed dog, from states across the nation. Former ACE recipients have included a Search and Rescue dog who helps provide closure to grieving families and a family pet who saved her owner from a bear attack, among dozens of other incredible dogs.

“Each dog that is nominated for an ACE Award is truly special in the heart of an individual or community,” said Doug Ljungren, President of the AKC Humane Fund. “These canine heroes have improved the lives of many and we’re proud to honor five of them each year with this award, which celebrates the human-canine bond.”

One award is given in each of the following five categories:

Uniformed Service K-9
Eligibility: Full-time working K-9s in the realms of city, county, state, or federal law enforcement; the military; firefighting; customs and border patrol; emergency services.

Exemplary Companion
Eligibility: Dogs without formal training or certification that have nonetheless distinguished themselves in some way and have made a meaningful contribution to their owners or communities.

Search and Rescue
Eligibility: Dogs certified to assist in wilderness and urban tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events and locating missing people.

Therapy
Eligibility: Certified therapy dogs working in hospitals, schools, disaster sites, war zones, and wherever else the affection of a good dog can provide comfort.

Service
Eligibility: Certified service dogs who enrich the lives of physically or mentally disabled owners, including, but not limited to, guide dogs for the blind, seizure-alert dogs, hearing dogs, balance dogs.

Note: Nominees doing service or therapy work without certification are considered in the Exemplary Companion category.

Honorees will receive an engraved sterling-silver medallion and an all-expenses-paid trip for dog and owner to Orlando, Florida, to be honored at the AKC National Championship presented by Royal Canin in December. A donation of $1,000 will also be made in each recipient’s name to the pet-related charity of their choice. The names of the five recipients will be added to the ACE plaque on permanent display in the AKC Humane Fund Library at AKC headquarters in New York City.

Anyone, including the dog’s owner or handler, may submit a nomination form.

Submissions for the AKC Humane Fund Awards for Canine Excellence for 2018 must include:

A non-returnable, original print or digital photograph of the dog. All digital photos must be larger than 1MB in size and a minimum of 300 dpi. The photo should feature solely the nominated dog. Photo should be sent to communications@akc.org
A 500-word-or-less description of how the dog has demonstrated excellence.
Dog’s call name, breed, age and sex.
Owner’s/Nominator’s name(s), address and phone number. E-mail address if available.

Nominations will be accepted through July 31, 2018.

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