Hero dogs honored at Mar-a-Lago event

BY:  PBDN- March 27, 2016

Hero dogs honored at Mar-a-Lago event

Beth Stern and Dr. Robin Ganzert: photo by Meghan McCarthy

More than 400 people gathered at The Mar-a-Lago Club to salute America’s bravest heroes on both ends of the leash, including Harley, a 15-year-old, one-eyed Chihuahua who was named American Humane Association’s 2015 American Hero Dog. Harley served as a “voice” for the thousands of dogs confined to puppy mills across the country.

Two other American Humane Association Hero Dogs also were honored March 1 at the luncheon: Axel, a German Shepherd and the 2015 Service Dog of the Year, who works side by side with (retired) U.S. Marine Capt. Jason Haag; and JJ, the 2014 Service Dog of the Year, who works every day to safeguard a young girl with a very rare medical condition.

The luncheon, hosted by Lois Pope and the American Humane Association, also featured Beth Stern, who serves as co-host of the Hero Dog Awards ceremony on the Hallmark Channel; TV personality, restaurateur, and author Donatella Arpaia; andDave Konig, a three-time Emmy Award winning comedian and TV actor.

The National Humanitarian Medal, American Humane Association’s highest honor, was presented to New York Posteditor and reporter Maureen Callahan, whose writing championed the reunion of military working dog Matty and Army Specialist Brent Grommet after bureaucratic mishaps originally prevented Grommet from adopting his former canine partner now in retirement.

“For thousands of years, mankind has had a special relationship with dogs, and the American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards are our way of honoring our best friends,” said Dr. Robin Ganzert, the organization’s president and chief executive officer and executive producer of the Hero Dog Awards on Hallmark Channel.