Last year one of the highlights of the Buffalo Sabres season was the team introduced a new team dog name, Rick.

Rick was part of the Pawsitive for Heroes program with WNY Heroes. They match up shelter dogs with military vets who are in need of a service animal.  Rick was an 8-month-old Newfoundland who was rescued by the Niagara SPCA when he join the Sabres as their official team dog. He was named after legendary play-by-play man, Rick Jeanneret.

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This season, Rick is with his owner, and the Sabres announced that their new team dog is Nikki.

Nikki is a golden retriever who is training to be a service dog as part of WNY Heroes' Pawsitive for Heroes program. She is named after Nicholas Warden, a U.S. Army veteran from Depew, who was killed in Syria in 2017.

Nikki will attend select home games and other events this season to greet fans, cheer on the Sabres and get lots of belly rubs.

She is already making herself at home with the players and coaches.

Pawsitive for Heroes was launched back in 2014 and the program pays for service dog training for veterans in need. The dogs and their owners go through various courses together, that help prepare the dogs to act as service animals to help those who have served our country.

Much like last year, Nikki will have her own jersey and fans will be able to buy replica jerseys with a paw emblem on them just like last year with Rick.

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