1996 Winners
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NJ Veterinary Medical Association
390 Amwell Road, Suite 402
Hillsborough, NJ 08844
Phone:  908-281-0918
Fax:  908-450-1286

Companion Category (Posthumous)
Awarded to Medusa, a 10 year-old black and tan Doberman. She dispelled the myth that Dobermans are aggressive, dangerous dogs through her service in helping human companions cope with terminal illness of the loss of their own pets. Medusa's unconditional love, her devotion to humans, and her uncanny ability to sense the needs of her human companions earned her this award.

Owner - Kathy Priest Esser
Veterinarian - Dr. Mark Esser

Hero Category
Awarded to Ginger. An intruder broke into Ginger's home. He informed Ginger's owner that he had murdered her husband, and was now going to murder her. At that point, Ginger, a 5 lb. Pomeranian who cannot hear, has only a few teeth and was in congestive heart failure, raced to the rescue. Ginger startled the intruder by biting him on the ankle, causing him to run off.

Owner - Kathy Fornataro
Veterinarian - Dr. Harold Blumenthal


Professional Category
Awarded to Steel Dust, a 41-year-old gelding. Steel Dust has helped disabled students learn to ride and is a member of the Atlantic Riding Center for the Handicapped in Egg Harbor Township, a volunteer organization dedicated to improving the quality of life of the disabled. Steel Dust was previously awarded the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association Therapy Horse of the Year Award in 1993 for his patience and understanding of the riders.

Owner - Atlantic Riding Center for the Handicapped
Veterinarian - Dr. Sharon Vaillancourt


Special Recognition

Buddy (Posthumous) - this award was presented to the Seeing Eye in Morristown in recognition of Buddy, the first seeing eye dog to graduate from the school in 1926.

Owner - Morris Frank
Veterinarian - Dr. Dolores Holle

Pascha - Pascha was recognized for his work as a rescue dog in the Oklahoma City bombing, 1995 earthquake in Kobe, Japan, the Edison, N.J. explosion, and Hurricane Opal in Panama City, FL.

Owner - Caroline Hebard


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