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DOGNY: America's Tribute to Search and Rescue Dogs

Children of St. Vincent's Hospital's Child Life Program

Children from the Child Life Program at St. Vincent's Hospital today painted a specially designed DOGNY sculpture for the hospital. This sculpture is just one of the over 100 life-size dog statues that will be placed on the streets and public spaces of New York City, with all proceeds going to support America's Search and Rescue Dog organizations.

The colorfully decorated canine sculpture was designed by AKC artist Kathryn Klanderman to allow the children to use their creativity in their individual designs. The sculpture has children holding hands around the entire body of the dog. Each child was invited to decorate one of the children on the sculpture as a self-portrait. The sculpture was purchased for this purpose by The Iams Company.

"This will be a great deal of fun for the children and will provide a very nice distraction from their illness, said Jayne Rivas, Chair of St. Vincent's Hospital's Department of Pediatrics." The children will know that they have contributed something really beautiful to this city during these difficult times. This project is something they will always remember."

This sculpture as well as the other dogs will remain on display through November, marking the one-year anniversary of September 11th, before being sold at auction in December at Sotheby's and on Sotheby's.com. All net proceeds to go to volunteer and professional Search and Rescue organizations throughout the United States through The American Kennel Club (AKC) Companion Animal Recovery Corporation Canine Support and Relief Fund, an established 501 (C)(3) charity.

The Child Life Program at St. Vincent's Hospital Manhattan aims to minimize the stress that comes from being in the hospital through play, art, music and therapeutic activities. These activities help normalize the hospital experience and allow opportunities for self-expression.

"St Vincent's impact on the community after September 11 was tremendous as they cared for the victims of the tragedy," said Lara Strazdin, at The Iams Company. "This is just one small way we at Iams can say thank you to this exceptional hospital."

The St. Vincent's sculpture is one of the twenty sculptures sponsored by The IAMS Company.

Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers is composed of eight hospitals: Bayley Seton, Mary Immaculate, St. John's Queens, St. Joseph's, St. Mary's Brooklyn, St. Vincent's Manhattan, St. Vincent's Staten Island and St. Vincent's Westchester. Resources include over 3000 physicians, four long-term care facilities, home health and hospice services and an extensive range of primary care, behavioral health and other specialty services offered at sites throughout the New York metropolitan area. Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers serves as New York Medical College's academic medical center for New York City.

Children painting a DOGNY sculpture during a Child Life art class at St. Vincent's Hospital, Monday, August 12, 2002.