Monday, May 6, 2013

Canadian animals honored for lifesaving bravery

Via PR Newswire - Heroes come in all shapes and sizes but at the 2013 Purina Animal Hall of Fame ceremony four canines were celebrated: Bella, Vicious, Snickers and Teak took top honors for their courage, determination and fearless devotion. Hosted at Toronto's PawsWay, the permanent home of the Purina Animal Hall of Fame, the inductees were honored for the extraordinary actions they took to protect a human life - demonstrating the unique and powerful bond that exists between animals and people.

"Now in its 45th year, the Purina Animal Hall of Fame annually shares amazing lifesaving stories and incredible acts of courage shown by pets and service animals across the country," said Mary Siemiesz, Executive Director of the Purina PetCare Legacy. "The tenacity of our 2013 inductees to rescue and protect people from harm - whether it's a wild animal, house fire, criminal or a medical emergency - showcases the connection animals have to humans and the physical risks they will take to keep them safe."

As one of the longest running pet recognition programs in Canada, the Purina Animal Hall of Fame has recognized the lifesaving heroics of pets and service animals for 45 years. Since its inception in 1968, 159 animals have been inducted - 132 dogs, 26 cats and one horse. Canadians can visit to read past stories, and learn how to nominate a heroic pet or service animal themselves. The 2013 inductees were carefully selected from hundreds of nominations across the country, submitted by those impacted by the heroic acts exhibited by a pet or service animal over the past year.

"The Purina Animal Hall of Fame is at the heart of who we are as a company and we are privileged to celebrate these extraordinary heroes," said Siemiesz. "This year's inductees remind us of how much animals enrich our lives, and that pets and humans are better together."

Considered by many to be very important members of the family, and even society, canines have grown into protective and unquestionably loyal animals that have enhanced and even saved the lives of the people they live with. The 2013 Purina Animal Hall of Fame inductees have proven themselves to be courageous and devoted canines that put themselves in danger in order to prevent what could have otherwise been four horrible tragedies.

"Without Bella's devotion, strength and courage I would have died in the fire that destroyed my home," said Chris Larocque, owner of the two-year-old Bernese mountain dog from Milton, Nova Scotia, and 2013 Inductee. "She is truly our family hero, and we're so happy that Bella is being recognized for her lifesaving efforts by the Purina Animal Hall of Fame."

For more information about the Purina Animal Hall of Fame, please visit To watch videos of this year's inductee stories, visit

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