Rowdy is a 14-year-old black Labrador from Canby, Oregon. He is your typical, fun-obsessed dog: He loves to bodysurf in the Pacific Ocean, chase tennis balls, go for hikes, and snuggle with his family. He also has a rare-but-harmless skin condition called vitiligo.
At around 12 years old, Rowdy’s family noticed he was developing white patches of fur around his eyes, and within a year, they had grown to full circles. Their unique placement and symmetry have given Rowdy the appearance of an inverse ghost (or The Hamburgler, or an orca whale, or a reverse panda, or fried eggs, according to Reddit).
But Rowdy has taken his unique appearance and done something truly beautiful with it: He is now the ambassador for the American Vitiligo Research Foundation, which supports children who have the condition. He is not only helping to raise awareness about vitiligo, but he’s also helping affected kids feel more confident in their own skin.
Rowdy has a “vision of embracing the diversity and differences in all children,” reads his website. “It is Rowdy’s wish that all children and adults see vitiligo as a unique blessing that’s rewarded with lots of love, attention, and treats, just like he gets.”
H/T to @thedogist for bringing Rowdy into our lives!
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