2003 - Hoss
Seven-year-old Travis Thannum, along with his family and best-friend Cassie, had been watching four-wheel drivers riding through the mud on a Saturday afternoon. Travis, who was told by his parents to stay near-by, hopped on his four-wheeler with Cassie to go to the house for some food. Hoss, a Labrador retriever and Travis's constant companion followed closely by. While riding, Travis tried to avoid an area of mud, veered off course, over a bank, and into a nearby pond. Travis could not swim and quickly slipped beneath the water. However, Cassie managed to stay afloat and called Hoss into the water. Cassie managed to climb onto Hoss's back as he carried her safely to shore, where she was then able to call for help. Hoss immediately returned to the water and began to circle around the spot where Travis had gone under.
Help quickly arrived and Travis's unconscious body soon rose to the surface, face down. Those who were present began resuscitation. Before long, Travis was on his way to the hospital, with most people fearing the worst. However, shortly into the ride, color began to return to Travis's face as he slowly came around. Today Travis is happy, healthy and feeling as lucky as ever to have his loyal companion Hoss right by his side.
Owner/caretaker: Chris Thannum
Nominating veterinarian: Dr. Gary Sloniker, Spooner Veterinary Clinic, Spooner