Skip to main content

A bomb-sniffing K9 from Minnesota could be America's Hero Dog

It would be a posthumous award for Adak, who lived in St. Cloud.

A former military dog from St. Cloud will be among the impressive canines profiled later this month when the American Humane Hero Dog Awards are broadcast on The Hallmark Channel

Adak, an explosive detection dog, is one of seven finalists, with the winner to be named on the October 26 show.

You won't see Adak at the award ceremony, though, because the 13-year-old died this summer. Owners Dan and Kristin Hughes chose Adak's 3-year-old son, Bdak, to represent him at the event, the St. Cloud Times reports

The seven finalists for the award have already been picked as winners in different categories – like service dog, guide dog, therapy dog.

Adak was the winner in the military category. 

Public voting for America's Hero Dog was held over the summer but organizers say a blue-ribbon panel of judges picked the top dog. 

Adak's story

Adak's long career included work for the Army, the State Department, and for the private company Dogs for Defense, his bio explains

His first assignment was in Iraq in 2006. While checking Baghdad Central Station for explosives before the arrival of a dignitary, Adak alerted his handlers to a suspicious vehicle and the event was canceled. 

In 2008 he was working in Afghanistan when a terrorist attack left some of the guests at a Kabul hotel trapped in their rooms. 

While the attack was still underway, Adak began leading an American military team from room to room. They evacuated more than 20 people from the hotel, finding a number of dead bodies along the way.

Dogs for Defense is owned and operated by Dan and Kristin Hughes and when his working days were over Adak became part of their family, which includes five children. According to his Hero Dog Award web page, Adak's transition from war to family life was "incredible." 

There are lots of pictures of Adak at #worldsmosttraveledK9.

Learn more about the other finalists and past winners of the Hero Dog Award here

Next Up

Screen Shot 2022-05-23 at 9.58.36 PM

Eric Perkins, Miss Minnesota, Paul Fletcher create new podcast

The podcast is released Tuesdays at 8 a.m. and is available wherever you find podcasts.

Mock aircraft cabin.

MSP Airport debuts mock aircraft to help ease flying anxiety

The pre-flight experiences cover the TSA screening procedure, exploring a terminal, boarding a plane and meeting a pilot, and preparing for takeoff.

Scripps National Spelling Bee

These Minnesota kids will be competing at National Spelling Bee

The upcoming event in Maryland will be the first fully in-person Scripps National Spelling Bee since 2019.

covid, kids

New data shows how omicron has impacted kids in Minnesota

The new data shows breakthrough data during the omicron period, which began Dec. 19, 2021.

Javen Juan Moreno

Albert Lea shooting suspect arrested after 3 weeks on the run

He is accused of shooting a man in the upper thigh on May 1.

motorcycle

Motorcyclist, 59, killed after losing control on right curve

The Harley Davidson rider was thrown from his bike.

state capitol Minnesota

Minnesota's 2022 legislative session: What's happening?

A list of items agreed upon and yet to reach any bipartisan agreement in the latest legislative session.

water drain

Water main break floods 40-45 homes in St. Louis Park

The city says the rupture happened on Minnetonka Boulevard.

Eli Hart

Charges: 6-year-old Eli Hart shot up to 9 times by his mother

The 28-year-old is facing 2nd-degree murder charges.

dave lee wcco radio

Former WCCO Radio host Dave Lee moves into podcasts

His new podcast, called 'My First Concert,' launched last week.

Tow Boat

Tow boat collides with Mississippi River lock and dam in Alma, WI

The crash remains under investigation by the United States Coast Guard.

unsplash school bus

Police: Man in minivan approached kids, claimed he was former principal

Investigators say children were approached by a man in a white minivan who falsely claimed he'd been a local school principal.

Related

dog threads

Dog clothing company in Wayzata scores $250K 'Shark Tank' investment

Dog Threads sells matching outfits for dogs and humans.

Someone may be poisoning dogs in Cannon Falls

Police say two pets have died in the past week

A Minnesota police force mourns the loss of one of its finest

His colleagues organized a retirement party for Blade, who had an aggressive cancer.

A Minnesota police force mourns the loss of one of its finest

His colleagues organized a retirement party for Blade, who had an aggressive cancer.