Picasso — Emerging Hero

Charity Partner: Pets for Patriots
Location: Eugene, Oregon

Picasso, a Pit Bull/Chi mix, was born with a face disfigured like a Picasso painting .Only a hero dog could survive incredible odds, lose everything, and still give so much love. I am Liesl Wilhardt. I founded Luvable Dog Rescue. We transported Picasso and his brother Pablo from a high-kill shelter after their intake photo stole my heart. Incredibly, he had survived a twisted face, life on the streets, and “death row.” Picasso’s videos went viral and he became an internet sensation. I had 9 rescued dogs in my home including my best friend and sidekick, a hairless French Bulldog named Pika. Pika and I were inseparable, as were Pablo and Picasso. Then our worlds changed. Pika died from liver cancer, which had also killed my mom. Then on our morning walk, Pablo collapsed and died from a brain aneurysm! Both our hearts were broken. Oddly, with Pablo, Picasso had been aggressive toward other dogs, from jealously or protectiveness. But alone, Picasso seemed different. So, I introduced him to my 9 rescued dogs and his “tough guy” attitude had vanished. He had lost his brother but found his family! Picasso is also gifted at helping shy dogs and puppies learn social skills. He now works with me at Luvable, training as a therapy dog for people and other dogs! Picasso doesn’t know he looks different. He only knows that life is for love. He is a hero for anyone born with physical differences, and he’s a hero to everyone who has persevered through adversity and loss with hope and love.

Voting is now closed. Meet the 2018 finalists on July 25 at 12PM Pacific Time!