Max the Miracle Dog has bronze statue unveiled in Keswick07/06/2021
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Max the ‘Miracle Dog’ a Springer Spaniel from Keswick, Cumbia, became a worldwide hit on social media when videos of his daily walks went viral in 2020. The 13-year-old pooch’s statue which depcits him sat on a bench was officially unveiled at Hope Park in the Lake District on July 2. In February 2021, Max was presented with the PDSA Order of Merit, the first ever pet to recieve this award for his outstanding contribution to society.
Owner Kerry Irving uploaded daily Facebook Live videos showcasing tips and advice for people on how to cope with lonliness and depression when the pandemic struck.
Between the two of them, over £300,000 has been raised for various charities by fans from across the world.
Speaking about the statue, Kerry said: “Hope Park is the perfect location as Max has brought hope to so many people.
“It’s incredible that our little boy, proudly wearing his PDSA Order of Merit, will now be sat there and remembered for generations to come.”
Adopted in 2008, Max was helped Kerry battle through chronic pain and severe depression after a serious traffic collison two tears earlier.
Max became a trained as a therapy dog in 2016 but has since become a ‘symbol of hope and happiness’ for thousands of people across the globe.
The PDSA Order of Merit has been awarded to 32 dogs and horses since 2014, all of whom have been trained to conduct specific roles.
Costing £26,000, the statue was paid for through a crowdfunding campaign, which reached its target amount within one day.
Kerry added: “Everyone has been so incredibly supportive, I can’t begin to express my thanks to all those that donated their hard-earned money.
“And the fact we were able to donate additional proceeds to PDSA too is wonderful, as it’s a charity that is very close to my heart.
“I’m humbled by it all, and hope that Max’s statue will bring great comfort to all those who visit.”
Amy Dickin, awards and heritage manager at PDSA, said: “Max has become a symbol of hope and happiness to thousands of people and we were thrilled to honour him with the PDSA Order of Merit, in recognition of his service to society as a virtual therapy dog.
“This beautiful statue is a fitting tribute to Max and will give his fans the chance to ‘meet’ him whenever they visit Hope Park.
“Kerry has worked so hard to make this happen too – he will no doubt be very proud of his boys today.”
Keswick town crier David Hall introduced the ceremony and 12-year-old Sophie who said she found great comfort in Max’s stories was given the honour of unveiling the statue.
Mayor of Keswick, Cllr Alan Dunn said: “Max is an extraordinary dog, he’s Keswick’s Canine Ambassador, and I’m delighted to be able to help unveil this wonderful tribute to him today.
“Max’s gentle nature has touched so many people around the world, and his and Kerry’s dedication to charitable work and helping as many people as possible is a true testament to the unshakeable bond between one man and his dog.”
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