Clever Lab wins service dog award
Polly has transformed Rachel’s life, and is a fine example of how service dogs improve the well-being of their people.

Meet the clever Labrador Retriever who won this year’s AKC® Humane Fund Service Dog Award!

Every year, the AKC® Humane Fund awards five loyal, hard-working dogs that have significantly improved the lives of their people and communities. The winner of this year’s “Service Dog” award went to Polly, a Labrador retriever who shares her life with Rachel Husband of Sparks, Nevada. Rachel has a rare health condition called dysautonomia, a disorder of the autonomic nervous system that causes fainting, leaving her wheelchair-bound. Polly and Rachel compete in various AKC Sports such as Rally and Obedience — but Polly’s most important role is being Rachel’s service dog.

The Lab picks up dropped objects, retrieves items, helps pull Rachel’s wheelchair, and is even able to use a K-9 button to call 911 in an emergency. Thanks to Polly, the duo has snowmobiled in Alaska and road-tripped from Virginia to California. She also enables Rachel to work full-time.

To learn about the other winners, visit