Humane Society announces Fifth Annual Dog of Valor Award winner

Hank, Fifth Annual Valor Dog of the Year and People's Hero. (photo:

When “McKenzie” suffered a severe beating with a hammer at the hands of her boyfriend, her dog Hank stepped into protect her, earning him a beating that shattered ribs and a hip. It was this story of valor, along with the healing both McKenzie and Hank experienced, that earned this Great Dane the title of Fifth Annual Dog of Valor.

Sponsored the Humane Society of the United States, the Dogs of Valor Awards honor and celebrate dogs who have shown extraordinary courage or resolve by heroically helping a person in need. Each winner’s heroic actions have had an enormous impact on the lives of those around them.

And in Hank’s case, this couldn’t be more true.

After McKenzie and Hank were reunited at an emergency shelter for victims of domestic violence, the shelter was inspired to build an addition to house victims who escaped with their pets.

Good boy, Hank!

Runners up for this year’s award were Buddy, the Lab who kept his owner Ted alive when the two were stranded in a blizzard, and Titan, the pit bull whose persistance alerted his owner John that his wife Gloria had suffered a brain aneurysm, fallen and fractured her skull. Both Ted and Gloria are alive today thanks to these smart and brave dogs!

This year’s Dogs of Valor Awards panel of judges included author and life coach for dogs, Tamar Geller, and NFL wide receiver, Braylon Edwards. You can learn more about the Dogs of Valor Awards on the Humane Society of the United States website.

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