In September ,Cesar Millan, host of the hit National Geographic Channel show Dog Whisperer, launched an online competition to choose a spokesdog for the Millan Foundation’s 2010 spay and neuter advertising drive. With help from a panel of celebrity judges, the foundation’s creator announced the grand prize winner on Tuesday.
Jake, a mixed breed pooch adopted from an Orange County, California animal shelter will join Millan as the face of the upcoming public service announcement campaign.
The winning dog can be easily identified from the scar that runs around the circumference of his muzzle, after his snout was wired shut by a former owner. Jake’s adoptive owner Robin Reiger said the dog’s past abuse "has not affected his spirit."
According to Millan, "Jake is a perfect representation of the wonderful companions found in shelters."
He added, "We set out to create a contest that would highlight the love we have for our canine companions while at the same time addressing the most serious crisis facing animals in shelters today, that’s overpopulation."
More than 3,000 dogs entered the competition, which raised more than $35,000 for the foundation.
The U.S. Humane Society estimates that 6 to 8 million cats and dogs enter shelters each year, and about half are eventually euthanized.