Bully XIX euthanized due to declining health

TaTonka Gold, Mississippi State's beloved mascot from 2001-09, was euthanized last Tuesday morning at the School of Veterinary Medicine on the MSU campus after his health had steadily declined over the past few years.

Bully XIX, as he was affectionately known, was the first official mascot purchased and cared for by the university.

Also known as "Bully", "Tonka" and "T-Money", he was euthanized at approximately 10 a.m. June 28. Present were his adopted parents and lifetime friends, Lisa and Al Chrestman of Mathiston. Also present were his doctor since puppyhood, Dr. Margaret Kern, and attending clinician, Dr. Christine Bryan.

Many university friends, students, faculty, and staff extended their condolences to the Chrestmans.

During the past few years, Bully XIX had been diagnosed and treated for disease processes including osteoarthritis, spondylosis, a splenic mass, and inflammatory bowel disease. Despite treatment with multiple medications and other treatment modalities such as physical therapy, his health steadily declined. Recently, he was no longer responding favorably to treatment, thus leading to the decision of humane euthanasia.

Bully XIX was born in 2000 and served faithfully as the mascot for nine years, attending many Bulldog football and basketball games, alumni functions and State-themed parties.

In 2006, he sired State's current mascot, Bully XX (Champ), who took over his father's duties as MSU's mascot in 2009 and still serves the role today.

A memorial service for Bully XIX has not been decided upon at the current time. More information will be released when it becomes available.

Those wishing to make a donation in his memory can do so through The Jennifer L. Hartsog Bully Fund or to The CARE Fund through the Animal Health Center. Both the Bully Fund and The CARE Fund are part of the MSU Foundation.

For additional information about Mississippi State athletics, please visit http://www.mstateathletics.com.

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Mississippi State University  •  Mississippi State, MS 39762  •  Main Telephone: (662) 325-2323  •   Contact: The Editor  |  The Webmaster  •   Updated: July 4, 2011Facebook Twitter