Usually when a dog and a tractor tangle, the dog doesn't come out a winner, but a Labrador retriever named Charlie from Indianapolis has defied that logic.
Charlie has been named the winner of the annual VPI Hambone Award handed out by Veterinary Pet Insurance for the most unusual insurance claim of the year after surviving a fractured spine and a lacerated kidney after a run-in with a tractor. Charlie loves riding with owner Jessica Parson on her family's farm, but the dog nearly died when she slipped off and was crushed by a large piece of farming equipment being towed by the tractor.
A veterinary team at Purdue University Veterinary Teaching Hospital performed two surgeries to save the Labrador's life, including a surgery to remove a failing kidney. As part of the award, the hospital will receive $10,000 from VPI through the Veterinary Care Foundation to help pet owners who cannot afford treatment.
Charlie was the winner of the online voting between 12 nominees selected from 1.1 million insurance claims in the sixth year of the contest. She was awarded with her own swag bag of doggy treats, toys and an emergency pet kit.
Charlie beat out runner-up Louie, a large mixed breed dog from Louisville that ate a diaper, a tube of diaper rash cream, an entire bottle of baby lotion and a children's book from a toddler's room. Finishing in third was Jack, a Jack Russell terrier from Virginia who was snatched up and carried away by a large snowy owl, suffering severe internal and external injuries. Previous winners have included Winnie, a mixed-breed dog from Massachusetts that ate two pounds of frozen onion rings, and Peanut, a dachsund buried alive by a skunk.