SOURCE: Mighty Dog

Mighty Dog

September 15, 2011 16:50 ET

Football Star A.J. Hawk and His Chihuahua Named Todd Announce the Winners of the Mighty Dog® "Big Guy, Small Dog" Contest

Meet the 11 Mightiest "Big Guy, Small Dog" Duos

ST. LOUIS, MO--(Marketwire - Sep 15, 2011) - Stepping out of the shadows with their pint size pooches, hundreds of Big Guys from across the country entered the Mighty Dog® "Big Guy, Small Dog" Contest to help prove that small dogs and the people who own them defy stereotypes. And now, professional football champ A.J. Hawk, who is the proud owner of a four-pound Chihuahua named Todd, is announcing the 11 Grand Prize winners of the photo/essay contest. As part of their prize, the winners and their dogs may be included in the 2012 Mighty Dog "Big Guy, Small Dog" calendar along with Hawk and Todd.

The contest began in April, when Mighty Dog® food for small dogs began its search for big guys who are proud owners of small dogs weighing 20 pounds or less. Hawk kicked off the contest by sharing the special relationship he has with Todd and calling all "guy's guys" to step forward and own up to being a proud small dog owner. Thirty finalists were selected by an outside judging panel and the public was then asked to vote for their favorite dynamic duos to help Hawk select the 11 winners.

Hawk judged the 30 finalist entries to select the 11 Grand Prize winners using the following criteria: appropriateness to contest theme (40%); quality of essay (35%); and Mighty personality (25%). Hawk's judging counted for 80 percent of the final score and the consumer vote was 20 percent of the final score to select the winners.

"Todd and I want to help change misperceptions about small dogs and show that they are great companions who are fun-loving, adventurous and have no idea they weigh less than 20 pounds," said Hawk. "I'm impressed that so many Big Guys around the country have stepped forward to show how proud they are to own Mighty dogs."

The 11 Grand Prize winners of the Mighty Dog® "Big Guy, Small Dog" contest are:

  • Andrew B. and Pebbles -- Ansonia, Conn.
  • Matt C. and Cody -- Chicago, Ill.
  • Matthew C. and Teddy -- Camarillo, Calif.
  • Brian D. and Petrie -- Charlestown, Ind.
  • Danny E. and Breezy Baby -- Kernville, Calif.
  • Robert F. and Doni -- Baltimore, Md.
  • Manuel M. and Maggie -- Tempe, Ariz.
  • Marlon M. and Regie -- Fairfield, Calif.
  • Todd P. and Baby Baby -- San Diego, Calif.
  • David R. and Rocco -- Newington, Conn.
  • Christian W. and Dino -- Seattle, Wash.

Get to Know the Grand Prize Winners
As part of their contest entries, the 11 winners described why they selected a small dog as their pet companion and how they share a Mighty life together filled with fun and everyday adventures. To view the contest winners' entries, visit www.mightydog.com.

In addition to possibly being featured in the 2012 Mighty Dog "Big Guy, Small Dog" calendar with Hawk and Todd, each Grand Prize winner will receive $1,000 and a three-day, two-night trip to Los Angeles with his small dog to take part in a professional photo shoot. The calendar will be available in limited edition print format and for free download on the Mighty Dog website in mid-November. For every calendar download, the Mighty Dog brand will make a $1 donation (up to $10,000) to Adopt-a-Pet.com, a non-profit pet adoption charity.

For more information about the Mighty Dog® "Big Guy, Small Dog" Contest, visit www.mightydog.com.

About Nestlé Purina PetCare Company
The North American headquarters for Nestlé Purina PetCare Company is located at Checkerboard Square in St. Louis, Missouri, where Ralston Purina was founded more than a century ago. Nestlé Purina PetCare promotes responsible pet care, humane education, community involvement and the positive bond between people and their pets. One of the leading global players in the pet food industry, Nestlé Purina PetCare is part of the Swiss-based Nestlé S.A. -- the world's largest food company.

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