Daddy, a pit bull who was Cesar Millan’s longtime friend and partner in canine rehabilitation, died peacefully Friday at the age of 16.
Millan, his family, friends, staff and volunteers were mourning the death of a dog described by “The Dog Whisperer” as “one of the most loyal, trusting, well-balanced, and influential pit bull ambassadors the world has ever known.”
“He lived each day of those sixteen years happy and fulfilled as Cesar’s right-hand-man, helping to shape the behavior of entire generations of dogs by showing them the way to balance. He stood as champion for calm-submissive pit bulls everywhere, and was instrumental in helping to repair their image as violent, savage, uncontrollable beasts. He successfully battled cancer and weathered chemotherapy, and even got the opportunity to present at the 56th Annual Creative Arts Emmy Awards,” Millan’s website reported.
Millan said Daddy has been immortalized by fans in all mediums — from painting, to photographs, to charcoal drawings and papier-mâché sculpture.
“And, of course, he lives on in his work, reflected in the balance and calm-submission of his protégé Junior, the countless animals to whom he was a positive role model, and in the hearts and minds of everyone who knew him as a calm, sweet, and mellow example of a widely misunderstood breed.”
Millan announced the establishment of a fund to honor Daddy’s legacy — the Daddy’s Emergency Animal Rescue Fund, (DEAR) which will be operated by the Cesar and Ilusion Millan Foundation. The DEAR Fund will provide assistance for dogs who are victims of abuse or violence, man-made disasters, and large-scale natural disasters.