Rescued Dog Receives PETA Award After Saving Child’s Life

Rescued Dog Receives PETA Award After Saving Child’s Life

For Immediate Release:
October 11, 2013

David Perle 202-483-7382

Minneapolis – When Christi Smith of Minneapolis recently adopted a rescued pit bull, she had no idea that she’d just brought a hero into her family. One day, a week after adopting TatorTot, as she’d named the dog, he began whining and barking and running between her and her 4-year-old son, Peyton Anderson. When Smith checked on Peyton, she found that he was barely breathing, so she rushed him to the emergency room, where doctors determined that his blood sugar had dropped to dangerously low levels. According to news reports, someone at a local veterinary clinic explained that because of dogs’ keen sense of smell, TatorTot had probably detected the presence of ketones, which are associated with low blood sugar.

For letting Smith know that her young son was in serious danger, TatorTot will receive a Heroic Dog Award from PETA, along with a special “doggie bag” containing a chew toy, a Nylabone, a comfy harness to wear on walks, and a bag of vegan dog treats. Smith had planned on keeping TatorTot only until she found him a home but has now decided to make him a permanent member of the family.

“Dogs are more than our best friends—as TatorTot demonstrated, they’re our family members and our protectors,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “PETA hopes TatorTot’s heroics will inspire people to head to their local animal shelter, because they’re all full of lovable, wonderful dogs like TatorTot.”

PETA’s gift basket is an acknowledgment of the many rewards of sharing our lives with animal companions—and the importance of valuing their devotion by becoming the best guardians possible. The group encourages anyone with the time, willingness, ability, and resources to care for an animal properly to adopt a dog or cat from a shelter, rather than contributing to the animal-homelessness crisis by buying from a breeder or a pet store. 

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind