One of Cassidy’s front legs had to be amputated after he was hit by a car. Sheltie Rescue of Utah helped Cassidy heal and found him a forever home. Rather than wallowing in his misery, Cassidy turned his disability into a positive by providing comfort to others with different abilities.
Showing “courage in the face of adversity,” Cassidy does “presentations for children about disabilities, acceptance and how everyone is different, special and has something positive to give to the world.”
He also visits retirement homes and rehab centers where he “gives a lot of love,” according to his mom Kathy.
Check back soon for the rest of the goings on at the 3rd Annual Hero Dog Awards.
Who visits nursing home residents, police officers, and school children in the course of her busy day? Elle, the therapy dog, that’s who!
She brings mental and physical comfort to the elderly, and is described as bringing “love and cheer” to the residents. She visits police departments to show them what wonderful dogs Pit Bulls can be, since they see so many poorly trained, aggressive Pits on the job. At schools, she listens to children as they learn to read, providing them with a non-judgmental ear as they sound out unfamiliar words.
Elle is sponsored by Zoetis, and her charity partner is Hand in Paw.
Bronx works with a young man who has multiple health challenges. When Christopher passed out at school and nearly died, he became fearful about being alone, afraid the next seizure might be his last. Bronx came into his life and relieved his anxieties, because the dog alerts Christopher’s family as to upcoming seizures.
“Whatever I do with my life, I just want to have Bronx next to me the entire time,” says Christopher.
Texas Hearing and Service dogs is the charity partner for Bronx.
Sponsored by MRB Productions, Lola changed her owner’s life by making her feel safe in a world where she cannot hear any warning signals. Lola was rescued by a trainer from Dogs for the Deaf and trained to alert her owner to the phone, people approaching from behind, doorbells, and other noises most of us take for granted. She helps Charlene to participate more fully in the life of her community.
Together, Charlene and Lola give presentations to groups, demonstrating how a deaf person’s life can be changed by having a hearing dog.
Support the American Humane Association by texting HUMANE to 80888.
The winner of the Search and Rescue Dog category is John D. Like all dogs, John D has an excellent sense of smell. He puts his gift to work in finding lost children. He is also involved in research that is trying to see if dogs can detect cancer cells – kind of an early warning system to help people learn early in the course of their disease that a problem exists so treatment will be more successful.
John D. is a shelter dog who was rescued by his owner. Kind of a neat circle there – from being a rescue to being a rescuer. His charity partner is the Sage Foundation for Dogs Who Serve.
Tonight’s Inspiration Award goes posthumously to Farrah Fawcett, who has inspired countless others to adopt shelter dogs. Her award was accepted by Ryan and Redmond O’Neal. Ryan tells the story of Farrah’s dog Satchel, an afghan named for Satchel Paige, who died on the operating table after being diagnosed with cancer.
Betty White and Polly Perrette are presenting Jingles, the winner of the Guide Dog Category. Jingles assists her owner Karen by being her eyes and giving her mobility. Karen also needs a diabetes alert dog, so she needed a guide dog who would not only be willing to work with another dog, but also to walk on Karen’s right side. (Most dogs are trained to walk on the left.)
Jingles is the only guide dog who has ever been trained to work in tandem with another dog. His charity partner is The Seeing Eye.
“Jingles is a hero because she brings so much joy to my life,” says Karen.
The show is also honoring Miranda Lambert for her work in rescuing animals displaced by the recent Oklahoma tornadoes.
Hosted by Joey Lawrence, the 2013 Hero Dog Awards are underway from Beverly Hills. He says in dog years, the show is 21, so the dogs are doing shots of toilet water now that they’re legal.
The first dog to be introduced is the Law Enforcement / Arson Dog category winner, Lakota. This dog is sponsored by State Farm and is partnered with the charity K9s4COPs.
After surviving a terrible car crash, Lakota endured many surgeries. The police department originally wanted to either put the dog down or retire him, making Lakota’s partner responsible for his care. After an outcry on social media, the department reversed their decision and paid for at least the first surgery.
Lakota’s partner’s wife says, “this dog saved my husband’s life many times.”
We’re so glad they have both recovered from their injuries.
Looking good, gentlemen!
Be back soon with the next contestant.
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