Monday Miracle
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How a Rescue Dog Inspired Kenn Bell to Create an Empire

When the filmmaker and Dog Files creator adopted Max from a shelter, he had no idea it would lead to a lifetime of dog-related work.

 |  Dec 16th 2013  |   2 Contributions

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If you love dogs as much as we do, you're probably familiar with Kenn Bell of The Dog Files. We wrote about him a couple of months ago when a recut of his documentary,  Hero Dogs of 9/11, aired on Animal Planet to commemorate the tragic day as well as the canines who went to work rescuing survivors. With an emphasis on high-quality Internet video, Bell strives to bring the awesomeness of dogs to a new reality, inspiring advocacy for these animals with which we share a profound and ancient bond.

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The two had a rough start, but now Kenn doesn't go anywhere without Max. Photo by Jeff Tisman

Kenn was in his 30s when he adopted his first dog since childhood. At the time he had no awareness of the plight dogs in shelters face and just happened upon St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center in New Jersey, where he fell in love with a black and white American Foxhound/Pointer mix who would come to be called Max. At the time Max had a different name, but according to Kenn, he and Max have decided to put that part of the dog's life behind them.

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Kenn discovered that Max was eager to please, which made him easy to train. Photo by Jeff Tisman

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Kenn with Max and Remy. Photo by Jeff Tisman

Eleven years later, Kenn and Max are inseparable, but it didn't exactly start that way. Max initially suffered terrible separation anxiety, and Kenn's home still bears the bite marks to prove it. Kenn credits Max with the creation of The Dog Files and the advocacy he's undertaken, as a result of what he's learned about dogs through his friendship with Max. In fact, he fell so deeply in love with Max that he adopted a second dog, Remy.

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Max is a happy dog -- and rightfully so! Photo by Jeff Tisman

Recently Kenn and Max went through a cancer scare, but after weeks of dismal anticipation, Max's test results came back cancer-free. Kenn has no delusions about Max's age and intends to see the dog through his golden years as a steadfast friend.

'Tis the season! I asked Kenn what Max would like for the holidays and since Max is a pretty contented dog, all he asked for was any of the awesome treats from Baxter Boo. Good choice!

Read more about Kenn and Max at The Dog Files.

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