You might think that a winner for the “Cadbury Bunny” contest would have to be — as the name implies — a bunny. But this year, the Cadbury Bunny contest was won by … a dog.
“Does your pet have what it takes to star in the CADBURY Bunny Commercial this Easter?” an entry popup on the Cadbury website asked.
“The winner’s pet will have the opportunity to have a spot in the reboot of our classic CADBURY Bunny Easter commercial. The winner will also receive a cash prize of $5,000. Photo entries will be judged based on judging criteria in the Official Rules and the top semi-finalists will be contacted to submit an audition video. The winner will be chosen with the help of America’s vote!”
The classic commercial features imposters: many different kinds of animals wearing bunny ears — but none of them is the Cadbury Bunny.
The dog who won the coveted title for 2020 and will be filmed for the commercial reboot is named Lieutenant Dan, and he has a touching story.
According to the Animal Justice League of America, the pup has seen more than his fair share of difficulties in life.
“Meet Lieutenant Dan, a dog who knows no bounds,” the organization wrote. “Though his two hind legs were removed shortly after birth, Lieutenant Dan lives his life to the fullest.”
The happy-go-lucky hound even has his own Facebook page, where fans can follow his daily activities. Based on his behavior as showcased in his regular video updates, you’d never know he had suffered the loss of his back legs. He’s full of joy and life, and by all appearances loves playtime.
“Lieutenant Dan was born different, but hasn’t let that slow him down!” his bio read, according to KPNX. “He has a joy for life that is infectious and inspiring!”
After he was entered in the competition, his page posted reminders for people to vote for him, and most of the reminders showed adorable Lieutenant Dan romping around in his wheelchair or balancing rather well on his front two feet while wearing an adorable pair of bunny ears.
“Meet Lieutenant Dan from New Richmond, OH,” the Cadbury page shared on March 6, along with his photo entry. “This big personality loves to show off and can’t help but make others smile and feel inspired whenever he’s around them. In his spare time, he loves to wrestle, run, hike, and swim. He unwinds after a long day with a classic treat – peanut butter!”
The fans responded, and the dog made it to the final round.
“We love seeing dogs with physical differences being showcased,” the Animal Justice League of America’s post continued, “because they are often sadly overlooked when families are looking to add a dog.”
“Lieutenant Dan is an excellent ambassador, showing that dogs with differences are still just dogs and have many great qualities to love!”
On March 24, the results were in — and Lieutenant Dan was the winner!
“We are so proud to announce that our Lieutenant Dan is the newest Cadbury Clucking Bunny!!” his page shared on March 24 after getting the results. “Thank you all so much for all of the love and support we couldn’t have done it without you!!”
Keep your eyes open for the next iteration of the Cadbury commercial — you may just spot this adorable pooch.
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