WASHINGTON, DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, April 10, 2019 — Every dog has its day, and more than 350 of the nation’s bravest dogs are hoping that day will come for them on Oct. 5 at the ninth annual American Humane Hero Dog Awards®, which is sponsored by the Lois Pope LIFE Foundation and Zoetis Petcare (a U.S. business unit of Zoetis), and will be broadcast in a two-hour special on Hallmark Channel this fall. These dogs are all competing for the honor of being named 2019’s American Hero Dog, the highest honor a dog can receive. But it’s now up to America to help decide which of those dogs will take home that coveted prize.
Dog lovers across the country are invited to visit www.herodogawards.org and vote once per day for their favorite dogs in each of seven categories. Following the first round of voting, which ends May 2 with the selection of 21 semifinalists (the top three in each category), a second round, featuring a combination of public and celebrity voting, will narrow the field to the seven category finalists. The winning dog in each category will be flown to Los Angeles and celebrated at a red carpet, star-studded awards gala on Oct. 5, when this year’s American Hero Dog will be revealed.
The seven categories for 2019 are: Law Enforcement Dogs, sponsored by K-9 Courage from Zoetis Petcare; Military Dogs, sponsored by K-9 Courage from Zoetis Petcare; Therapy Dogs; Service Dogs, sponsored by Lulu’s Fund; Shelter Dogs; and Search and Rescue Dogs and Guide/Hearing Dogs, both sponsored by Chicken Soup for the Soul Pet Food. Zoetis Petcare is the corporate presenting sponsor of the Hero Dog Awards.
Over the past eight years, Americans have cast millions of votes for more than a thousand dogs, all seeking the coveted title of American Hero Dog. The program reaches more than 1 billion people each year and draws the support and participation of top celebrity dog lovers from all over the world. Hosts, judges, award presenters, and entertainment acts have included Jay Leno, Billy Crystal, Betty White, Ariel Winter, Rebecca Romijn, Alison Sweeney, James Denton, Beth Stern, Bindi Irwin, Derek Hough, Richard Marx, Katharine McPhee, Michelle Beadle, Whoopi Goldberg, Denise Richards, Lisa Vanderpump, Chelsea Handler, Martin Short, Jewel, Wilson Phillips, John Ondrasik, Carson Kressley, Miranda Lambert, Pauley Perrette, Kristen Chenoweth, Naomi Judd, Eric Stonestreet, Danica McKellar, Bailee Madison, and many, many more.
“Our best friends do so much to improve and even save our lives, and every dog owner knows about the extraordinary, unbreakable bond they share with their dog,” said Robin Ganzert, PhD, American Humane’s president and CEO. “The American Humane Hero Dog Awards are our way of celebrating the power of the human-animal bond, which has been a core part of our organization’s mission for 142 years.”
“The Hero Dog Awards recognize some of America’s bravest heroes,” said philanthropist and Platinum Presenting Sponsor Lois Pope. “I am honored to present this invaluable effort to honor the best of our best friends and shine a light on the extraordinary acts of courage and kindness performed by ordinary dogs.”
“The remarkable connections between people and animals are sources of strength, comfort, and healing,” said J. Michael McFarland, DVM, DABVP, Executive Director, Zoetis Petcare Marketing. “As an organization dedicated to preserving and supporting those connections, we are proud to again serve as the corporate sponsor of the 2019 American Humane Hero Dog Awards.”
“Every year, we have the great honor of highlighting new hero dogs, whose stories of bravery, devotion, and unconditional love underscore the power of the human-dog bond,” said Bill Abbott, president & CEO, Crown Media Family Networks. “The Hero Dog Awards, a truly inspirational program, not only gives our canine friends the recognition they so deserve, but it also shines a spotlight on the incredible range of services they provide on our behalf.”
Key dates for the 2019 American Humane Hero Dog Awards (all rounds open and close at 12pm Pacific Time):
- 1st Round Voting: Until May 2
- 2nd Round Voting: May 23 – July 18
- 3rd Round Voting: 1 – Sept. 9
- Hero Dog Awards: 5
For more information about the 2019 American Humane Hero Dog Awards, and to vote daily, please visit www.herodogawards.org. For more information on sponsorship opportunities email Mari Harner at [email protected] or call 1-800-227-4645.
About American Humane
American Humane is the country’s first national humane organization, founded in 1877. For more information, please visit www.americanhumane.org. To inquire about Hero Dog Awards sponsorship opportunities, please email Mari Harner at [email protected].
About Hallmark Channel
Hallmark Channel is Crown Media Family Networks’ flagship 24-hour cable television network, distributed nationwide in high definition (HD) and standard definition (SD) to 88 million homes. As the country’s leading destination for quality family entertainment, Hallmark Channel delivers on the 100-year legacy of the Hallmark brand. In addition to its signature new, original movies, the network features an ambitious lineup of other new, original content, including scripted primetime series, such as “Good Witch,” “When Calls the Heart” and “Chesapeake Shores”; annual specials including “Kitten Bowl” and “Hero Dog Awards”; and a daily, two-hour lifestyle show, “Home & Family.” Additionally, Hallmark Channel is the exclusive home to world premiere presentations of the acclaimed Hallmark Hall of Fame franchise. Dedicated to helping viewers celebrate life’s special moments, Hallmark Channel also offers annual holiday programming franchises, including “Countdown to Christmas,” “Countdown to Valentine’s Day,” “Summer Nights,” “Fall Harvest” and “Winterfest.” Rounding out the network’s diverse slate are some of television’s most beloved comedies and series, including “The Golden Girls” and “Frasier.”
Hallmark Cards, Inc. owns and operates Crown Media Family Networks.
For more information, please visit www.crownmediapress.com
To visit the network website, please visit www.hallmarkchannel.com
About Lois Pope, The Lois Pope LIFE Foundation, Inc., and LIFE (Leaders in Furthering Education)
As one of America’s leading philanthropists, Lois Pope has positively impacted the lives of individuals at the local, national and international levels. She has established three separate organizations dedicated to helping those in need. These organizations are the Lois Pope LIFE Foundation, Inc., Leaders In Furthering Education (LIFE), and the Disabled Veterans’ LIFE Memorial Foundation. For more than 20 years she has been the driving force behind the Lois Pope LIFE Center at the University of Miami School of Medicine, The American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial, and a groundbreaking new program with American Humane in Palm Beach County. Lois Pope recently donated to American Humane several Lois Pope Rescue Vehicles. Each rescue vehicle is a 50-foot long response unit, complete with a Ford F-350 truck and trailer, which is specifically designed and outfitted to provide an array of animal emergency services and cruelty responses within a region.
On Oct. 5, 2014, Mrs. Pope saw the completion of a decades-long dream – the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial, which was dedicated by President Obama in Washington DC. It will stand in perpetuity as a reminder to the public and legislators of the courage and sacrifices of the four million-plus living disabled veterans and all those who died before them, as well as the need to be vigilant in assuring their support and understanding the human cost of war. Through her advocacy, Oct. 5 every year will serve as a National Day of Honor for disabled veterans.
A mother, a grandmother, and a great grandmother, Lois has trained for and completed five New York City Marathons.
Zoetis is the leading animal health company, dedicated to supporting its customers and their businesses. Building on more than 65 years of experience in animal health, Zoetis discovers, develops, manufactures and commercializes medicines, vaccines and diagnostic products, which are complemented by biodevices, genetic tests, and a range of services. Zoetis serves veterinarians, livestock producers and people who raise and care for farm and companion animals with sales of its products in more than 100 countries. In 2018, the company generated annual revenue of $5.8 billion with approximately 10,000 employees. For more information, visit www.zoetis.com.
About Chicken Soup for the Soul Pet Food
Chicken Soup for the Soul understands the unique relationship between people and pets. Health conscious consumers have been feeding their cats and dogs Chicken Soup for the Soul wholesome and balanced, super premium pet food for over 15 years. Holistic in nature, the entire line of products is made from only the finest ingredients: real meats, fruits, vegetables and herbs. With no added corn, wheat, soy, artificial coloring, flavoring or preservatives, Chicken Soup for the Soul pet food is inspired by your love for pets and promotes overall health and well-being for dogs and cats. The products are proudly made in the USA and feature rescued shelter pets on every bag. Core and grain-free formulas and a line of treats are available in independent pet specialty stores nationwide and online.
A portion of all proceeds from the sale of Chicken Soup for the Soul pet food goes to help shelters and pets in need through Chicken Soup for the Soul’s Fill-a-Bowl … Feed-a-Soul™ program. The program, which was launched in association with the American Humane, aims to provide over a million meals to shelter pets annually. Learn more at www.chickensouppets.com.
About Lulu’s Fund
Lulu’s Fund, which is part of the Timothy T. Day Foundation, was founded in 2012. Named after the Day’s beloved pug Lulu, Lulu’s Fund continues the Foundation’s ongoing commitment to supporting organizations in the animal rescue community throughout the United States. Organizations that receive support from Lulu’s Fund are primarily those that rescue abused, neglected and abandoned dogs. Their focus is to treat existing medical issues, provide spay and neuter services, place dogs in safe foster homes, and ultimately find forever homes for the animals. For more information about the Foundation, visit www.tdayfoundation.org.