DOGNY: America's Tribute to Search and Rescue Dogs
AKC Presents Bronze DOGNY Sculpture to Hartz Mountain
On Thursday, October 2, 2003, AKC Chairman Ronald H. Menaker and President and CEO of AKC CAR and AKC Board Member Dr. Carmen L. Battaglia visited the corporate headquarters of the Hartz Mountain Corporation to present the gift of a solid bronze DOGNY sculpture to Hartz.
Dr. Battaglia and Mr. Menaker both spoke of the generosity of Hartz throughout the AKC's charitable program, DOGNY – America's Tribute to Search and Rescue Dogs. Hartz not only designed and sponsored the reknowned "Merry Go Hound" DOGNY statue displayed at FAO Schwarz, but also brought ingenuity to the program with the Hartz / DOGNY "Help a Hero" toy program. These unique plush toys were immensely popular among dogs, children and adults throughout the country! For each toy sold, Hartz donated a dollar to the AKC CAR Canine Support and Relief Fund to support America's canine search and rescue organizations. This program will continue in 2004 with two new editions of the toy, debuted today by Hartz Chief Scientific Officer Albert Ahn, Hartz Corporate Vice President of Marketing, Alan Kerzner, and Hartz Corporate Vice President of Sales, Paul Kuny.
Also on hand to receive accolades were three celebrated German Shepherd Dogs, Pepper, Ayk and Keota. Pepper, owned by Rich and Myrna Goodwin, is the 2003 Award for Canine Excellence (ACE) winner for Search and Rescue. Pepper served as a dedicated search and rescue dog for 12 years with West Jersey Search and Rescue. K-9 Ayk is a 2003 ACE Honorable Mention Winner for Law Enforcement. Ayk is a dual-trained police dog, specializing in patrol work and narcotics, and is the K-9 Partner of Sergeant Russ Litchult of the Borough of Waldwick, NJ Police Department. Keota, also owned by Rich and Myrna Goodwin, is a search dog that worked at the Staten Island landfill during the recovery efforts after the 9/11 attacks.
The bronze DOGNY statue serves as a permanent reminder of the partnership between AKC, AKC CAR and Hartz, and will be on permanent display at the headquarters of the Hartz Mountain Corporation in Secaucus, New Jersey. "Scout" and "Ranger," the newest editions of the Help a Hero toy, will be available in stores by January 2004. As was the case with last year's toys, a dollar from every toy sold will benefit canine search and resue organizations through the AKC CAR Canine Support and Relief Fund, a 501(c)(3) fund.