NEW ONESYou can now listen to Fox News articles!
A Pennsylvania alligator is in the running for America’s Favorite Pet.
WallyGator, a 7-year-old reptile, hailing from the city of York and reportedly “loved to give hugs,” is currently leading a new pet popularity contest — America’s Favorite Pet Animal Kingdom — featuring animals of all shapes, sizes, and types. .
It is currently unknown how many votes WallyGator has, but the animal has a devoted TikTok following of more than 68,100 people.
NEW YORK MAN FIGHTS TO KEEP LOVED EMOTIONAL SUPPORT PIG
WallyGator’s TikTok bio says he is a “recognized emotional support animal” and his owners are reportedly conducting a reptile rescue.
The Pet Favorite contest includes rounds of online voting to determine which animal will be crowned the winner.
Votes can be entered for free on AmericasFavPet.com with one or two votes cast per day, depending on the verification method chosen.
Alternatively, people can choose to cast 10 to 250 votes through a monetary donation, which will benefit the Progressive Animal Welfare Society (aka PAWS.org) – a non-profit shelter and rehabilitation organization based in Lynnwood, Washington.
HORSE PHOTOBOMBS PREGNANCY SHOOT WITH HILARIOUS SMILE: ‘ALWAYS IN MISTAKE’
If WallyGator wins America’s Favorite Pet Animal Kingdom, he will receive a $10,000 prize and a two-page spread in InTouch Magazine.
Right behind WallyGator in terms of votes is a chinchilla named Churro, a rescued dog named Hank, and a tamed wild mustang named Sundance “Sunny” Kid.
Dozens of other animals are in the running, but the first round of voting will narrow down the top 20 pets at 7 p.m. PDT on Sept. 1, according to the contest’s website, which has a live countdown.
Fox News Digital has reached out to the owners of America’s Favorite Pet and WallyGator for comment.
The owners of WallyGator have started posting videos of his adventures on his TikTok account – @WallyTheAlligator from April 2022.
The account shows WallyGator walking on a leash, swimming with people and allowing people to offer him hugs and kisses.
AMERICA’S ANIMAL DOGS PROVIDE FREE ASSISTANCE DOGS TO OUR MILITARY HEROES AND FIRST RESPONDER HEROES
The young alligator offers emotional support to one of his owners, who has been diagnosed with cancer, according to WallyGator’s participant profile on America’s Favorite Pet website.
“WallyGator is an amazing creature,” its owner wrote on the site in response to why they think WallyGator should win the contest.
“He feels [people’s] emotions and gives hugs to try and cheer people up,” continued the owner of WallyGator. “He has come with me for radiation treatments and has cheered up other patients and the doctors and nurses.”
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
WallyGator reportedly lives in his owner’s home and his go-to treats are cheese puffs and raw chicken.
“At night he likes to climb into my bed and steal my blankets and pillows,” his owner wrote. “WallyGator tried to take my blankets into his pond!”
It is not illegal to have an alligator as a pet in Pennsylvania. However, it is illegal to release them into the wild, Penn Live wrote in August 2021 when the outlet reported that 25 alligators have been found in the state for about 21 years since 2000.
In 2019, Joie Henney — reportedly one of the owners of WallyGator — told Philly.com that he had received permission from his doctor to use WallyGator as an emotional support animal after Henney refused to take medication for depression.