No, this isn’t another Sarah Palin story.
In place of the pit-bull-in-lipstick, we bring you the decidedly nonpartisan Coal, the bulldog-with-a-prosthetic-leg (and if he has an opinion, he’s just not saying).
Coal lost his left forepaw to cancer a year ago, and osteoarthritis in his other limbs left him too weak to stand. Faced with the proposition that the dog be put down, Coal’s owner, Reg Walker, chose instead to spend £10,000 on a prosthetic limb for the American bulldog. A security guard whom Coal regularly accompanied to work, Walker not only proved to be dog’s best friend but also an unwitting advocate for medical advancement: the same techniques used on Coal, only the second surgery of its kind with an animal, have since been adapted for use in humans, last month enabling a leg operation for a survivor of the 7/7 bombings.
For Coal, however, it seems that trailblazing is simply de rigueur. In addition to five years spent working on the Big Brother set, the pioneering pup, according to Walker, is the only dog to have been allowed into the Live8 concert or backstage at Royal Albert Hall. Coal – and this is our favourite bit – is even given his own backstage passes when accompanying Walker on a gig.
And if this video of Coal doesn’t melt the ice (heh ... coal ... melts ice) around your cold cold cynic’s heart, well then we don’t know what can.