COAST CITIES — The San Diego Humane Society and SPCA’s second annual “Animal Compassion Awards” recognize and pay tribute in several categories, to extraordinary animals and animal lovers throughout San Diego County.
The Animal Impact award went to Dogs on Deployment. This award recognizes the powerful and unique impact that people have on animals, and vice versa. Marine couple 1st Lt. Alisa Sieber-Johnson and Lt. Shawn Johnson were well aware of the challenges of a military life. What they weren’t prepared for was facing those challenges with pets. That’s when they founded Dogs on Deployment, a non-profit which provides an online network for service members to find volunteers who will board their pets during their owner’s service commitments. Sieber-Johnson said, “Military members are responsible members of the community. We should be responsible pet owners just like we are in every other aspect of our lives.”
The Humane Hero award went to San Diego City Councilmember Lorie Zapf, who helped prohibit retail pet sales, making it illegal to sell dogs, cats and rabbits within city limit.
The Pet-Friendly Destination award recognized Jeff Levitt, owner of Shades Oceanfront Bistro in Ocean Beach. Levitt has helped the San Diego Humane Society and other animal welfare groups find homes for more than 175 pets in the past two years.