LOS ANGELES (AP) — Diamond is a pit bull. She’s officially a hero too.

On Wednesday, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles awarded Diamond with their 29th annual National Hero Dog Award.

hero pit bull Pit Bull Named SPCALAs Hero Dog Of The Year

Diamond, a pit bull, was named Hero Dog Of the Year by the SPCLA. (credit: CBS)

When her family’s Hayward apartment caught fire in October, the dog barked to wake owner Darryl Steen. He rushed to save his daughters, grabbing 9-year-old Darahne and dropping her out a second-story window.

But he couldn’t get through the smoke and flames to reach 16-year-old Sierra. Diamond not only wiggled through but shielded the teenager beneath a mattress until firefighters rescued them both.

Sierra and her father were treated for burns and received skin grafts. Diamond spent six weeks at a veterinary hospital recovering from burns and smoke inhalation.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (18)
  1. Yvette says:

    Way to go Diamond. Paws high..

  2. Jason Frazier says:

    It is amazing what people will believe. The dog had absolutely NOTHING to do with warning or saving this family. Steen made up the entire scenario in order to promote pit bulls and try to convince landlords to rent to people who own pit bulls. News services need to check facts before reporting such garbage.

    1. Consuelo says:

      jason you are an idiot. did he burn the dog , himself and his daughter for attention? sounds like you need attention with your idiot remarks

    2. seanH says:

      Do you have any evidence to support that?

    3. Ben Wallace says:

      Hey Jason, there is an article up there with words in it. you should read those words before putting words in the little boxes down here. This process helps keep your foot out of your mouth….. just saying.

    4. Melinda says:

      You are unbelievable. Have you ever owned a dog? Have you ever done more than just pass by one on the opposite side of the street? Unless you yourself were there, what right do you have to say anything at all? Sounds like you’re racist and against Pit Bulls maybe? You really need to think twice before you speak. Something tells me you’re a miserable person, and since misery loves company, you just couldn’t help yourself in writing such terrible accusations, Jason.
      I’m happy for Diamond receiving this award, and even more happy that the family made it out alive. Good job, Diamond!

    5. carol says:

      You are an IDIOT! Its because of ignorant people lke you that hundreds of innocent dogs of many breeds are put to sleep in shelters every day. If more people showed the unconditional love and loyalty that dogs do maybe this world wouldnt be the mess that it is!
      Way to go Diamond, you show the love and loyalty of the breed! She is a true example of the heart the bully breeds truly have.

    6. Darryl Steen says:


  3. timmy says:

    what is your email?

  4. JoanD says:

    If you check out this story on other sites, you’ll see more photos of Diamond with what is obviously very severe burns. Jason is an idiot.

  5. Donna says:

    Let me guess, Jason. You dont like Pit Bulls or dogs do you. My guess is, that you would have probably run in the opposite direction. Real easy to sit behind a computer and say these things. You are nothing more than an idiot trapped in a moron’s body. Get a ife moron. Or grow up. Although that is probably asking too much.

    As for Diamond?? Way to go you swet girl. Show these people what your breed is truly all about.

  6. kerri976 says:

    Tamara has anyone contacted you??? I work in rescue and would love to help them get homed in they still have no offer I received Diamonds story about a month ago and dont know what the status is yet….

  7. Jen Evol says:

    Such a great story. Its always nice to see positive light on American Pit Bull Terriers. The media loves to have a field day with the breed but never think that the blame is the other end of the leash.
    Jason, I think you’re ignorant to this situation. Try educating yourself before posting. The internet thanks you in advance.

  8. yay for diamond!

    people, don’t worry about jason. he’s just proving that many dogs are smarter than many humans.

  9. Ken Christensen says:

    Jason is just another example of people who have absolutely no understanding of the beautiful and exceptional bond these dogs have for us. And day after day they are being “murdered” by us in shelters all over the world. Laws need to be changed to protect them, not kill. We give billions of our dollars to other countries every year and we can’t even make sure our own are taken care of. There should not be one of these precious creatures killed, ever!


  10. Pedro Sousa says:

    Jason clearly likes the attention.

  11. LoyaltyOfDogs says:

    Yes, the bond between dogs like Diamond and their humans is truly remarkable. You may enjoy this story of a bull terrier during the CIvil War who became famous–and is honored with a lifesize, bronze statue at the Gettysburg Battlefield–because of her loyalty to her soldiers. You can read about her, and the many other hero dogs of the Civil War, here: http://www.LoyaltyOfDogs.com/LargeView.aspx

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