BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — This spring, Resurgence Brewing Co. hosted a competition to benefit the Ten Lives Club and the City of Buffalo Animal Shelter, with “Buffalo’s Top Dog and Coolest Cat” to be featured on beer cans this summer.

For the second year in a row, Resurgence hosted the competition, and this week, the winners were announced. The launch party for the beers will take place July 10 from noon to 5 p.m. at Resurgence on Chicago Street.

Sven, a service dog from WNY Heroes and last year’s champion, was named Top Dog again this year, with 9,877 votes in the photo contest. Jameson, a mostly blind cat, adopted from Niagara SPCA, was named the 2022 Coolest Cat, with 2,700 votes. Both will be featured on Resurgence to the Rescue beer cans.

With $1 from each vote benefitting the animal shelters, the community raised a total of $48,185 during the contest.

Jason Dent, Sven’s owner and a combat veteran, said having his dog win the contest two years in a row has been a great experience.

The Resurgence to the Rescue photo contest has brought awareness to the Pawsitive for Heroes program, and also the relationships that it has built along the way. We have gained many sponsors, veterans inquiring about service dogs, and friends. Helping CBAS and Ten Lives Club hits home as we have an an adopted dog and cat. Our shelter dog is part of the pack and I don’t know what Sven would be like without her, but when we first saw her at the shelter, she was so innocent and scared … she had to come home with us.

We also don’t know where we’d be without our cat who was the first of the group. Being able to help raise money for these organizations has been great. Everyone should be able to experience the love a dog or cat can bring. I get to spend every day with my best friend and others should be able to experience that also.”

Jason Dent

Sarah Palkowski, Jameson’s owner, said he and his twin brother were surrendered to a shelter and nearly euthanized at 3 weeks old due to severe hearth issues, when one of Palkowski’s friends fostered the kittens and brought them back to health. Now, the brothers live with Palkowski, who said she is happy to have her “perfectly imperfect” cat as the face of Resurgence’s summer beer.

“Jameson is an inspiration,” Palkowski said. “Even with his disabilities he shows that rescued animals can live their best life with a good home and loving family. Jameson may be imperfect, but his story is more than about animal rescues. No one, animal or human, should be ashamed or judged because of a physical flaw.”

Sven will be the face of “Sven’s Session IPA” and Jameson will be the face of “Jameson’s Summer Ale.”

Each pet received a complimentary photoshoot from Tailor Mayde Photography and a behind-the-scenes tour of Highmark Stadium, courtesy of the Buffalo Bills.

Tailor Mayde Photography will be at the release event next month to take photos of pets. There will also be vendors on-site, basket raffles, food, drinks, paw print painting and more, all to benefit the Ten Lives Club and City of Buffalo Animal Shelter.

The winning pets and their owners, as well as Kimberly LaRussa of Sweet Buffalo, joined Jordan Norkus on News 4 at 7 Monday to discuss the competition and the upcoming event. The full segment can be seen above. For more information on Resurgence to the Rescue, click here.

Adam Duke is a digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2021. See more of his work here.