Tonight Animal Friends are sponsoring two awards at the Daily Mirror’s Animal Hero Awards at the Grosvenor House Hotel in Westminster. The awards ceremony is hosted by Amanda Holden, and we are proud to be sponsoring the awards for Public Service Animal of the Year, and the Lifetime Achievement Award.
The Public Service Animal of the Year Award is for the service animal who is deemed to have been the most heroic in the line of duty. There are three nominees, all of whom have shown great aptitude, tenacity and most of all, courage in the face of danger.
Hertz is a German Shorthaired Pointer who helped protect Camp Bastion by using his excellent sense of smell to detect banned electronic devices carried by civilian workers at the camp. By sniffing out MP3 players, mobile phones and other gadgets, Hertz made sure that it was impossible for spies to record sensitive information and share it with dangerous people. While Hertz was working at Bastion there were no attacks on the camp and Hertz has been credited with making that possible. He’s currently working in the UK as a drugs detection dog, awaiting his orders for his next trip abroad before his retirement in about three years’ time.
Albert the horse is the longest-serving horse working for Thames Valley Police. He has been vital in leading crowd control squadrons at protest marches in London and Brighton, despite often being pelted with glass bottles, chairs and even metal railings. He has always stood fast in the perilous situations and, when protesters tried to unseat his rider at a rally, he used his own body weight to lean against them and keep his rider safe. He has also acted on security detail for the Queen on state visits to Windsor Palace.
Last but not least, Metropolitan Police Dog, Fuzz, was nominated for his bravery pursuing a suspect in an armed robbery of a moped. Fuzz, a highly-trained German Shepherd Dog apprehended the man, who then violently attacked Fuzz with a metal bar, leaving him with a nasty cut under his eye. Fuzz didn’t give up, keeping the violent suspect on the ground until the police could catch up and arrest him. Fuzz was treated for the cut and a bad nosebleed, but has since made a full recovery. The suspect was charged with a number of offences, including animal cruelty for attacking Fuzz.
Elaine Fairfax, our Managing Director and Founder, said: “I am delighted to be sponsoring the Public Service Animal of the Year Award and wish the best of luck to the nominees, who are all deserving of this honour. I look forward to attending the ceremony and presenting the winner with their award, but as far as I am concerned they are all winners.”