Applications to adopt hero dog pour in

SAN DIEGO – A 15-pound maltipoo Sophie that was injured while protecting a puppy from a coyote attack has recovered and is available for adoptions, according to a local animal shelter.

SophieSophie may not look too tough, but her story is heartwarming.

“She was playing in a backyard when a coyote came in to attack another puppy. Just when the family heard a ‘yelp,’ they turned and saw Sophie jump in front of the puppy,” said Jessica Gercke of the Helen Woodward Animal Center in Rancho Sante Fe. “Before the family could scare the coyote away, Sophie was bit in the neck.”

While a few stitches remain, Sophie is in good spirits and is ready for a new home.

“We have applications coming in from Las Vegas, New York, Washington DC, Palm Beach Florida — really from all over the country,” said Gercke.

Since there is a long line of people wanting to give Sophie a new home, Helen Woodward Animal Center is requiring people to submit an application and a 300-word essay on why she should go to them.

Applications and essays are due by February 10. Caregivers hope to match her with the perfect home in time for Valentine’s Day.

Information about adopting Sophie is on the shelter website.