About The American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards™
The American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards™ were created in 2010 to celebrate the remarkable bond between dogs and people. This annual national competition searches out and recognizes America’s Hero Dogs, who unconditionally avail themselves to us in so many important ways, whether it’s saving lives on the battlefield, lending sight or hearing to a human companion, providing therapeutic support to children suffering from cancer, or just greeting us with a wagging tail at the end of a hard day.
Heroic hounds may be nominated by anyone at least 18 years of age in one of eight categories: Law Enforcement & Arson Dogs; Service Dogs; Therapy Dogs; Military Dogs; Guide Dogs; Search and Rescue Dogs; Hearing Dogs; and Emerging Hero Dogs (for ordinary dogs who do extraordinary things or are just heroes to us). Finalists in each category will be selected by the American public via online voting, and following the announcement of the eight finalists, the public and a special blue-ribbon celebrity judging panel will have the chance to name the top American Hero Dog of 2013.
Every finalist will be presented with a Hero Dog award for their feats of loyalty, bravery, and love, and win $1,500 for a selected charity partner. In addition, one finalist will walk away with top honors as the winning American Hero Dog for 2013, securing an additional $5,000 for their charity partner. The total approximate retail value of all prizes is $57,000 but the recognition is priceless.
Meet the 2012 American Hero Dog!
Specialized Search Dog Gabe began his service to the United States of America as a Military Working Dog in 2006 and had an impact not only on the life of Charles Shuck, his handler and best friend, but indeed American soldiers around the world. Gabe had been stationed from Fort Lewis, Washington, to Fort Bliss, Texas, to Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, and Fort Hood, Texas. While deployed to Iraq, he completed over 210 combat missions with 26 finds of explosives and weapons. When Gabe wasn’t leading a combat mission he frequently visited wounded troops in Army hospitals and he visited school children in elementary schools. Gabe was selected as the American Kennel Club Heroic Military Working Dog in 2008 and was a runner-up in the 2011 Hero Dog Awards’ Military Working Dog category. Gabe retired in 2009 after a very distinguished career earning over 40 awards and coins of excellence for his work. His service to our country was out of pure love and respect for his country and the people of the United States. Until his last day on earth, Gabe continued to visit schools and inspire children with compassion and respect and the importance of staying in school. Beloved Hero Dog Gabe crossed the Rainbow Bridge on February 13, 2013.
Meet the Inaugural American Hero Dog!
Roselle, the guide dog who led her blind master safely down 78 flights of stairs following the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center, was named the American Hero Dog at the world’s first American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards™. Roselle, who passed away in 2011, was honored at the Hero Dog Awards by her companion and best friend, Michael Hingson, and Guide Dog Africa.