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To read this article in Filipino, see Kabang.

Kabang (29 February 2008 – 17 May 2021) was a shepherd mix askal from Zamboanga City who achieved international renown after she rescued two children from a potentially fatal motorcycle crash in December 2011.[1][2]


Motorcycle accident

Kabang was a stray puppy when she was adopted by Rudi Banggal. In December 2011, Bangga's daughter 9-year-old daughter Dina and a 3-year-old cousin, Princess Diansing, were crossing a street when a motorcycle sped by. Sensing the danger, Kabang jumped at the motorcycle and knocked it over. The children and the motorcycle rider sustained minor injuries. Eyewitnesses said the children and the motorycycle rider would have suffered more serious injuries if not for Kabang's intervention. The dog, however, was badly injured after getting caught in the front wheel of the motorcycle. "The bones holding her upper snout were crushed, and we could not do anything to save it", said Banggal. "We just pulled her off the wheel".[2] Kabang ran away but returned to the family's home about two weeks later.[1]

Recognition and recovery

Kabang's nose and upper jaw were severely injured in the accident, but Banggal decided against having her euthanized.[1][3] She lived as normal and even became pregnant. With her mouth permanently open, however, Kabang caught an infection. She received antibiotics, but a surgery was not in the cards for her because the Banggal family could not afford it.[1]

Karen Kengggott, a nurse from New York, found out about Kabang's story online in February 2012. She decided to extend help and organized a fundraiser, called "Care for Kabang." Although unsuccessful at first, the effort received help from the Animal Welfare Coalition, and the campaign was restarted later in the year. The organizers achieved their goal in four weeks,[1] with the campaign making Kabang even more famous internationally. "She has become a superstar," said Banggal in July 2012. "People come here to have their photos taken with the dog."[2]

Kabang underwent a specialized surgery at the William R. Pritchard Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital at UC Davis in the United States in October 2012.[3] Kabang was diagnosed with heartworms and a transmissible venereal tumor, a type of cancer. She began chemotherapy a week after arriving in the US.[4] Due to these other medical conditions, surgery was not started until March 2013. The surgery was successful and Kabang left UC Davis on 3 June 2013.[5] The total cost of Kabang's care was $27,000, which was paid for by donors from 47 different countries.[6]

Kabang arrived back in the Philippines on 8 June 2013. She received a hero's welcome in her hometown of Zamboanga City.[7] Veterinarian Anton Lim remarked "[Kabang is] as normal as she can be. She doesn't need any special medication. So aside from the aesthetic, she's normal."[8]

Death and legacy

Kabang died in her sleep on 17 May 2021, at the age of 13.[9] She was buried near a statue of Francis of Assisi in Zamboanga City in July 2021.[10] An aluminum statue in Pasonanca, Zamboanga City was inaugurated on 13 August 2021 to honor her.[11][12][13]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Background Information. William R. Pritchard Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 "Kabang, Hero Dog Who Lost Her Snout Saving Two Girls, To Be Treated In US Hospital", Huffington Post, July 28, 2012. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 "PHL's hero dog Kabang soon to undergo $20,000 facial surgery in US", GMA News Online, October 9, 2012. 
  4. Timeline. William R. Pritchard Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital.
  5. The VMTH Treating Kabang the Hero Dog. William R. Pritchard Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital.
  6. Daxim L. Lucas. "Saving 'Kabang'", Inquirer, June 9, 2013. 
  7. "Philippine town honors dog injured saving 2 girls", WRAL-TV. 
  8. "Hero dog Kabang back in PH", ABS-CBN News, June 8, 2013. 
  9. Padilla, Cecilio (May 17, 2021). Kabang, Filipino Hero Dog Who Was Treated At UC Davis, Dies In Her Sleep At 13. CBS Sacremento.
  10. "Zamboanga's hero dog 'Kabang' laid to rest", ABS-CBN News, July 2, 2021. 
  11. Alipala, Julie (March 2, 2021). Zamboanga's hero dog honored with statue. Philippine Daily Inquirer.
  12. Kabang to get memorial statue. CNN Philippines (May 19, 2021).
  13. "Kabang, 'aspin' that saved 2 girls, honored with statue in Zamboanga City", Rappler, August 16, 2021.