Am & Can BISS, Am & Can CH
Celebre Elijah of Hillside
CD, Can CD, RN, HT, FMD, TDI, CGC, ROM
Purina Hall of Fame Inductee
2011 Therapy Dog Ambassador for The National Dog Show
2015 BSCA Register of Merit
AKC's first Lifetime Achievement Ace Award winner. Awarded October 2010 for Eli's work at Ground Zero in New York City after the September 11, 2001 attacks upon the World Trade Center.
Eli has done some important things throughout his life, starting with his therapy work after 9/11 and all the wonderful titles he's won — he exemplifies a lifetime of achievement. "Eli is the first time we've ever decided to give out a lifetime achievement award." (Lisa Peterson, AKC Director of Communications)
PHILADELPHIA, PA (October 25, 2011) – Eli, one of the few living therapy dogs who comforted first responders and victims of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, has been named Therapy Dog Ambassador for The National Dog Show Presented by Purina® and the Kennel Club of Philadelphia for 2011.
A retired show dog and therapy dog who competed at the first National Dog Show in 2002, Eli travels around the country with owner/handler Sherry Hanley appearing at dog shows and fundraising events benefitting the Wounded Warrior Project and other causes.
On behalf of the National Dog Show, Eli will visit the New York City Ronald McDonald House on Nov. 10, spending time with children with cancer and their families. The National Dog Show’s 2009-10 Therapy Dog ambassador, Rufus, visited the Ronald McDonald House in 2009 as part of its therapy dog program, which includes a partnership with the Angel on a Leash Foundation, connecting therapy dogs, like Eli, with pediatric cancer patients.
Eli will also appear at the Kennel Club of Philadelphia (KCP) cluster, meeting the public on Saturday, November 19 from 2-3 p.m. in the Purina Pro Plan exposition area at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks/Valley Forge, just west of Philadelphia. Eli will also appear on Sunday, November 20 from 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. He will be part of NBC’s online/broadcast coverage of the show, which airs nationally on November 24, Thanksgiving Day, from noon-2 p.m. following the Macy’s Parade. A total audience of some 20 million tunes into the show each year.
“It’s a great honor for Eli to come back to Philadelphia as Therapy Dog Ambassador for the KCP and The National Dog Show,” said Hanley. “Therapy Dog work is important and Eli is active in generating awareness about its value. Also, he loves to meet people and he is a ham, so we are looking forward to being involved.”
“Eli’s therapy work will never be forgotten and there is a whole generation of therapy dogs who walk now in his footsteps,” offered National Dog Show NBC expert analyst David Frei, the author of “Angel On A Leash,” a new book about therapy dogs. “Eli and Sherry Hanley will get a huge ovation Saturday when they are introduced in the stadium at The National Dog Show.”
Hanley, a Lehigh County (PA) Deputy sheriff from Allentown (PA), took Eli to the September 11 command post on the banks of the Hudson River just months after he was certified to help comfort rescue workers and victims of the tragedy. Fourteen months later Eli was a celebrated competitor at The National Dog Show both in the Belgian Sheepdog show ring and as a 9/11 hero.
He went on to win scores of titles and honors as an obedience dog and in herding competitions along with his show dog accomplishments, which include twice being ranked in the top 20 in his breed nationally. He is a member of the Purina Hall of Fame for his 9/11 therapy work and last October he was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the American Kennel Club.
Now 12 years old, Eli is also a noted sire, the father of multiple champion and grand champion show dogs, including two who will be competing in the Belgian Sheepdog breed at The National Dog Show this year.
(Purina® & KC of Philadelphia 2011 press release)
Courtesy of: dhuckestein