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People’s 2022 Cutest Rescue Dog Finalists Are Waiting For Your Vote

Written by: Molly Weinfurter
Molly Weinfurter is a writer for iHeartDogs, and she’s passionate about helping animals in need. She volunteers for Bailing Out Benji and a local dog rescue.Read more
| Published on September 7, 2022

Every year, People Magazine hosts the World’s Cutest Rescue Dog Contest to encourage dog adoption. The two previous winners were Heaven, the smiling dog, and Lamb Chop, the puppy mill survivor. Now, in 2022, People is searching for a new winner, and thousands of dogs want to snag the top spot.

People has narrowed down the contestants to ten adorable rescue dogs, and now they want the public to help them choose the top three. From there, a panel of judges will select this year’s cutest rescue dog.

Meet the 10 Adorable Finalists

Below are the ten cutest rescue dogs of 2022, according to People Magazine readers. It’s a tough choice, but you can only pick one to vote for.


Gordon cute rescue dog

Gordon was a stray in Taiwan when he was hit by a car and paralyzed. After his rehabilitation process, the now 11-year-old dog was put up for adoption and flown to America to be with his forever family.


Panda the cute rescue dog

Panda’s family said they were drawn to her at the local animal shelter because of her beautiful coloring and the way her eyes “sparkle.” The 5-year-old Pomeranian mix loves playing on the beach with her humans.


Merle cute rescue dog

Merle was once a stray in Mexico, but after ending up in a Colorado shelter, the 8-year-old dog now has a family who loves him. They call him “the Ryan Reynolds of the dog world.”


Winnie cute rescue dog

5-year-old Winnie was rescued after being found in an abandoned house. She has been there to support her human through many tough times, so when Winnie got adopted, they rescued each other.


Koda cute rescue dog

9-year-old Koda’s human used to be afraid of dogs until Koda helped her overcome those fears. She often calls the pup by his nickname: “Canine Yoda.”


Minkus cute rescue dog

Minkus is a spunky young dog who recently got adopted after his family fell in love with his quirky appearance and loving personality. The 2-year-old pup is possibly a mix between a Pug, French Bulldog, and Boston Terrier.


Abbey cute rescue dog

5-year-old Abbey is a registered therapy dog. She gave birth to six puppies before she found her forever home.


Gizmo cute rescue dog

Adorable Gizmo is only one year old, and he loves hiking in the Rocky Mountains with his family.


Mugsy cutest rescue dog

5-year-old Mugsy is a Pekingese and Pug mix, so his family describes him as a “unicorn among dogs.”

Tiny Tim

Tiny Tim cute rescue dog

Tiny Tim is an adorable senior dog at 14 years old. He ended up at a shelter with a broken leg, and his story inspired his new human to become a vet.

How to Vote for Your Favorite

You can vote for your favorite rescue pooch at Voting is open through September 28th, and the winner will be revealed on October 12th.

The winner will receive:

  • A custom photoshoot
  • An article in People Magazine
  • A year’s supply of Pedigree dog food
  • A $1,000 donation to the animal rescue organization of their choice

So, get your votes in while you can!

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