The story begins in Florence, Ala, where there were 18 dogs nobody wanted.
So following a common practice at this shelter, they were piled in a chamber, one on top of the other and the gas was turned on, legally killing the unwanted dogs.
But one beagle, scared but alive, walked out of a gas chamber. It seems that Daniel was meant for more and maybe that’s why he survived.
His miracle made news last November and he is currently living in Nutley. He also has been nominated for the 2012 American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards, in the category of Emerging Hero.
This award would give the beagle his own Hallmark movie detailing his story and struggle.
“The most important thing is he lives his life as a dog,” said Nutley resident, Joe Dwyer, who adopted Daniel as his fifth dog. “People were offering tens of thousands of dollars for him and there were over 1,000 applicants. I didn’t want to see him exploited.”
Daniel is now a Nutley resident.
Steven Canfield Crowley, 31, was so inspired when he heard Daniel’s story, he detailed it in a documentary with his award-winning film company Fallen Dog Films.
“People were bawling,” said Crowley, who said he is a dog person as well. “I don’t think the [short film] is sad but if it gets under their skin they’ll join our cause.”
Daniel the dog's story doesn’t stop there.
The local four-legged celebrity is now the symbol of a humane reform movement that has been approved by 29 states across the country and is currently being considered by Pennsylvania’s state Senate. The law has even taken on his name across the country — Daniel’s Law.
While Dwyer and Crowley both explained they realize it is impossible to get every dog adopted, but what they are fighting for and what Daniel’s Law wouldimplement is a humane way to euthanize dogs.
In the last few months Daniel and Dwyer have attended rallies, pet adoption events and Daniel was even given an award from Pets and Heroes in March.
“If it gets too much for him, I’m going to stop,” Dwyer said. “This dog though thrives on it. He’s still happy and loves life.”
A public vote started this month for the Hero Dog Award and goes until the end of June. The vote will narrow down eight dog candidates at a red carpet party where the winner is picked.
Daniel could be the dog that went from a gas chamber to possibly walking the red carpet in Hollywood, on Oct. 6, at The Beverly Hilton Hotel.
Dwyer said,“He was meant for this."
For more information on Daniel’s Law, Daniel the Beagle or to watch Crowley short film go to danielthebeagle.com.