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Local Fire Station’s Rescue Named ‘Dog of the Year’

Lifestyle

Clementine won the ASPCA Dog of the Year Award. | Image by ASPCA

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A Texas fire station dog won the ASPCA Dog of the Year Award.

Clementine is a 3-year-old Catahoula/hound mix. She was relocated from a shelter in Louisiana to Cedar Hill, Texas, during Hurricane Ida in 2021.

Captain Robert Moree from the Cedar Hill Fire Department adopted Clementine in October 2021 as an emotional support dog to help his team at station #212 to cope with job stress.

Moree told People magazine, “One day, after I responded to a call that was not far from the Tri-City Animal Shelter, I decided to stop in to see what dogs they had available. I knew we wanted to rescue to help bring awareness to adopting from local shelters.

“I explained that we wanted a dog they were having a harder time placing, preferably one that was older and would easily adjust to the fire station without needing the attention and training a puppy would.”

Clementine now lives entirely at the station, with her own play yard.

Moree said, “As firefighters, we’re typically thought of as the ‘macho guys,’ but the things we experience leave a lasting impact on us, and, at times, it can be hard to share our emotions after responding to some tough situations.

“Clementine not only makes the station feel more like home during our 24-hour shifts but also offers a positive, constant boost to morale and keeps us excited to come to the station.”

She helps the firefighters deal with tough situations, and Moree says she can “read the room and sense emotions.”

According to Moree, some of Clementine’s favorite activities are riding along in the firetruck, playing with kids, alerting the fire station whenever there is a visitor, cleaning up their scraps of food, and, of course, providing comfort.

Matt Bershadker, ASPCA’s president and CEO, said of Clementine and her award:

“Clementine represents how a shelter dog can be both a beloved pet and a valuable source of therapeutic support and comfort, which is reflected so well in her moving interactions and remarkable behavioral development with these firemen. As a shelter animal transported out of the path of an upcoming hurricane, she also demonstrates the lifesaving value of animal relocation.”

Moree and the team are proud of Clementine’s national acknowledgment.

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Mary P
Mary P
1 month ago

Wonderful story!