Pet name: Susie
Pet age: 4
American Humane Association Hero Dog Nomination
In August of 2009, a pit bull mix puppy gently licked the face of her owner’s child. Her owner became enraged. The puppy, later named Susie, was beaten so severely her teeth were knocked out and her jaw was broken. She was then set on fire and left for dead. For ten days she suffered alone in a North Carolina park. Her small body was covered with hundreds of maggots eating away at her tortured skin. She had third degree burns over 60% of her body. Her ears were burned off entirely. In 2008, I was attacked by an abused dog and suffered a miscarriage and lost my ability to have children. I was extremely depressed. Then I adopted Susie! She brought healing to me, taught me to forgive and conquer my fear of dogs. Susie became my hero! Susie inspired me to fight for stronger animal cruelty laws in North Carolina. Together, with community support, we were successful! In 2010, Governor Perdue signed “Susie’s Law” and Susie put her paw print on the bill. We founded Susie’s Hope™ nonprofit promoting education, animal safety and responsible pet ownership. We visit schools, churches, nursing homes, and hospitals. Susie is a Canine Good Citizen and a registered therapy dog. Our journey together inspired a movie, “Susie’s Hope”, about us. One animal and one human can make a powerful difference in the world. Our inseparable bond enabled us to go from being victims to living victorious lives!
Donna Lawrence, North Carolina