December 7, 2022


Ice hockey gamers have absolutely nothing on Benny theIce Skating Dog When this canine requires to the ice, he’s equally as concentrated as any type of human gamer. With his front paws grown securely in his customized skate, he lugs the mindset of a professional hockey gamer with a stick– just his stick remains in his mouth. Benny skates easily around the rink, leaps over difficulties, and also he also flaunts with the excellent crossover. It’s the excellent hat method!

So, exactly how did this yellow Field Labrador saved from fatality row at a sanctuary in Utah come to be such an ice skating feeling?

Benny is constantly concentrated when he gets on the ice. Photo thanks to Bark Gallery

Let’s skate backwards in time to 7 years earlier when Cheryl Del Sangro and also her other half Flory determined it was time to embrace one more rescue canine. They had 2 older canines however desired a friend for Doodles, their 3rd more youthful canine.

” I found this photo online of a pet dog up in Salt Lake City, Utah,” stated Del Sangro, a retired specialist number skater. “He was simply looking right into the video camera with those large black swimming pools of eyes.” After looking for even more details she figured out the canine had actually been formerly taken on and also returned. He rested at the sanctuary for 6 months and also was set up to be euthanized the following day. No one desired him. Except Del Sangro.

Springing Benny From the Shelter

She reached function quick. Time was going out for the canine she would certainly callBenny The just means to obtain him out was with a rescue. She spoken to Las Vegas Labrador Rescue, which was able to pull Benny from the euthanasia list. His journey to the Del Sangros in Las Vegas began with help from volunteers who each offered to drive a leg.

When he arrived in St. George, Utah, he was picked up by a Las Vegas Labrador Rescue volunteer. Before arriving at his new home, Benny received a checkup at the vet while the Del Sangros were approved for adoption. He was finally welcomed with open arms by his new family. “He was just perfect from the day we got him,” Del Sangro said.

Benny in all his glory showing how a crossover is done. Photo courtesy of Bark Gallery

From the start Benny was different. He was very smart and not your average dog. Del Sangro started Benny with dog training sessions, and said the trainer was very impressed with his ability to learn. Today Benny knows roughly 100 tricks and commands while his vocabulary is approximately 300 words. “He knows what’s going on and knows what words mean,” Del Sangro said. Eventually she took Benny to do tricks for a variety of children’s events and charity fundraisers.

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Ice, Ice Benny

In 2018, friend and dog photographer Rick Vierkandt of Bark Gallery, who is also involved with dog rescue, contacted Del Sangro about an idea: to take Benny out on the ice. Vierkandt knew of Del Sangro’s skating background and that it could be a great fit.

At the time most everyone in Las Vegas was excited about the Vegas Golden Knights NHL team making it to the playoffs in their first season. Vierkandt wanted to make a video to cheer them on that would include Benny. He got access to the local ice rink.

Benny gets to hang with all the cool people on ice including Marc-André Fleury, goaltender for the Vegas Golden Knights. Photo courtesy of Bark Gallery

Benny quickly took to the ice. “I put my skates on and Benny just ran around,” said Del Sangro. He chased a toy puck and stood in front of the net and even caught the puck. He ran around the ice with a hockey stick in his mouth, chased Del Sangro, and had a blast. Vierkandt made the video and posted it for the Golden Knights. It received 40,000 views.

Since moving to Vegas Del Sangro hadn’t really been on the ice in years, but after being on the ice with Benny she realized she could combine her two passions: skating and Benny. “Afterward I started thinking that I could actually get him to skate,” she said. While everyone else thought she was losing her mind, Del Sangro crafted a pair of skates for Benny who could already skateboard.

Benny with mom Cheryl Del Sangro, left, meets Olympic Gold medalist Brian Boitano. Photo courtesy of Bark Gallery

“The first day we went, he actually got up and skated,” Del Sangro said. “It was incredible. We put two cones out and a hockey stick across them. When he skated up to it, he jumped over. We didn’t even teach that to him. That’s just kind of how he is.” These days Benny knows how to stop, do crossovers, jump, and he’s starting to skate backward. To ensure he doesn’t slip or fall, he skates on rough ice so it’s not too slippery.

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The Crowds Go Wild

Benny is apparently the first dog to ever skate at an NHL game, which was for the Vegas Golden Knights first back in November 2019. “They’ve had him out there twice during intermission in front of 18,000 screaming people,” Del Sangro said, adding that it didn’t faze Benny one bit.

Benny has actually additionally skated with the UNLV hockey group along with gone to numerous occasions consisting of Skate America, a worldwide number skating champion where he’s fulfilled high-level skaters. In January 2020 he was welcomed to the UNITED STATE Figure Skating Championships in North Carolina where he fulfilled retired number skating champ and also Olympic Gold champion Brian Boitano.

Benny presents with the UNLV hockey group with his stick in his mouth. Photo thanks to Bark Gallery

At the champions, 2 Olympic number skaters were authorizing autographs. “Benny strolled over to the table, raised on it, took a seat, and also he checked out the group that was waiting to take his photo,” Del Sangro stated.

Ever the super star, Benny obtains focus from Meryl Davis, Olympic Gold champion in ice dance. Photo thanks to Bark Gallery

With Del Sangro, Benny additionally returns by aiding with reasons consisting of skating with youngsters in Spectrum on Ice, which offers ice skating possibilities for those with autism range condition. He has actually emerged at pet companies consisting of The Animal Foundation and also Nevada SPCA.

During the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Benny and also Del Sangro weren’t able to skate. Benny had not skated considering that very early March 2020 however ultimately obtained the possibility last July when the CW Network involved video clip tape him after being called among the leading 10 canines of 2020. “It resembled he never ever missed out on a day,” Del Sangro stated.

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A Special Bond

Although ice skating is Benny’s favored sporting activity, he additionally likes to swim, dock dive, skateboard, and also do dexterity. He can also climb up trees and also jump off wall surfaces! “You need to do things with him, or else he will not leave you alone,” Del Sangro chuckled. “He has an assumption that when we’re leaving your home, he’s including you.”

Cheryl Del Sangro makes sure Benny’s skates are safe. Photo by Bark Gallery

Benny has actually undoubtedly taken the ice skating globe by tornado. While he definitely likes skating, he additionally delights in doing anything withDel Sangro She’s his individual and also they have a really unique bond.

Through that link she has actually found out that when it involves Benny, the difficult is feasible due to the fact that every person stated it would certainly be difficult to obtain Benny to skate, however check out him currently.

From a pet dog that was slated for fatality row at a high kill sanctuary, Benny has actually come a lengthy means. “I constantly state Benny is the poster puppy for adoptable canines,” Del Sangro stated. “If Benny can originate from 6 months residing in a high-kill sanctuary, make it out, and also specify of where he is currently, it simply reveals you the opportunities that sanctuary canines have. He’s a rescue canine that has actually originated from his last day in the world to live his finest life due to the fact that he obtained a 2nd possibility.”

Check out Benny on his website and follow him on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Further Reading