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Abby, an 11-year-old Labrador Retriever from Mazomanie, serves in the Pet Pals Pet Therapy program at the American Family Children's Hospital in Madison. Pet Pals is a unique program because it is available to for all patients, especially children who are immunocompromised from organ transplantations or cancer chemotherapy.

"It really takes a lot of focus and effort to constantly reposition their bodies so patients in wheel chairs, beds and in parent's arms are well within reach," says Abby's nominating veterinarian, Dr. Linda Sullivan of the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine.

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Sir Chip of Munk "Alvin" Simonick, a 4-year-old English Labrador from Stevens Point, has taken his job to the next level. Alvin holds a very important role in his owner's life as a service dog and companion.

His owner, Ron Simonick, has a medical condition which limits his mobility significantly. Alvin's "job duties" include: retrieving dropped objects, turning light switches on/off, bringing tools and other items and of course being his constant companion.
"But this is not the most remarkable thing about Alvin," says Alvin's veterinarian Dr. Diane Scott of Oakview Veterinary Medical Center.

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Bailey, an 11-year-old Labrador from Madison, is not your typical pet. Bailey has very important traits which have enabled him to be truly special.

His owner, Tom Cunningham, has a hereditary eye disease, Retinitis Pigmentosa. Bailey guides Tom every day to avoid injury and danger. Bailey has provided countless hours of service to Tom over the past nine years.

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Andy, an 11 year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier, from Bristol, has done more good deeds in his short life than most people do in a lifetime.

Andy has provided countless hours of service to people of all ages. He was the first therapy dog registered for R.E.A.D (Reading Education Assistant Dogs) in Wisconsin. Volunteer work with the R.E.A.D program was exceptionally important to Andy's owner, Cindy Bundy, because her daughter is dyslexic and struggled with reading. This year, Andy is celebrating his tenth year as an active therapy dog.

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Mato is a 6-year-old German Shepherd that was born in the Czech Republic and currently serves as an Appleton Police Department K9 unit. He was trained as a working dog in the Czech Republic and imported to the USA by Adlerhorst International Police K9 Academy in Riverside, Calif. in 2006.

Mato's partner, Officer Matt McQuaid of Appleton, trained with Mato in California from September-December in 2006. Mato is trained in subject detention, tracking, and illegal drug detections.

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