Max Scherzer just became even more lovable in the eyes of Washington sports fans. The ace starting pitcher for the Washington Nationals, along with his wife Erica, are now up to four in their count of dogs they’ve adopted for the Humane Rescue Alliance (HRA).
As part of NBC Sports Washington’s ‘The Give’ series along with Easterns Automotive Group, Scherzer explained how his and Erica’s urge to start bringing dogs into the house really heated up after he arrived in Washington in 2015.
“I’ve always been an animal person, I’ve always loved dogs. My wife and I, even though we’ve dated the whole time, we were never really in the position to have a dog. We just realized we traveled too much,” Scherzer said. “But then when we got to D.C., we felt like life was at least stable enough and that’s when we adopted our first two, Bo and Rafi.”
Bo, Rafi and Max all share more than just an address: heterochromia. They all have different colored eyes—one brown and one blue (Bo actually has both eyes that are half of each). The Scherzer family fell in love with the two girls just as much as the Nationals organization did. Bo and Rafi even appeared in the team’s 2015 pet calendar.
But much like potato chips, two weren’t enough. Bo and Rafi needed some companionship, Scherzer said.
“But they were shy. We just felt like they needed kind of an alpha male presence, and then that’s when Rocco came in,” Scherzer said of the third dog the couple brought into the house. “So he’s the leader, he’s gotta be in front, and then he kind of helped bring out the confidence in the two girls. They kind of became more social dogs because of that.”
Rocco gets a home, Bo and Rafi get more sociable, and the Scherzers have more daily dog fun—everybody wins. Well, the Max and Erica wanted more, and who can blame them?
“Erica one day said she found the perfect dog, and I was like, ‘I don’t think we want to go to four, like three’s been good enough,’” Scherzer said. “I came back from a road trip and that dog was there, and she was right! It was a perfect dog. This is all my wife and I gotta give her all the credit.”
With the addition of Zou, the fourth of the bunch, Erica and Max had become content with the canine count in the Scherzer home, and it was all thanks to the HRA.
“Humane Rescue Alliance, HRA, was an up-and-coming organization that she wanted to partner with, and we both felt very passionate about that—that’s something that’s very easy to help out in the community, in so many different capacities,” Scherzer said of the extent the HRA goes to help animals in need. “Pet supplies or veterinary visits or just finding different ways to help people to adopt animals. We really want to erase that stigma: ‘You don’t want a shelter dog, you want to try to go through a breeder and get a purebred dog,’ and a lot of times you pass over some great animals, absolutely great animals that are in need of a home.”
Erica and Max now have four dogs—two to go along with each of their two daughters, Brooklyn and Kacey Hart.
“It just takes some awareness to realize that that’s honestly one of the best ways to help out the community, is just to adopt a dog,” Scherzer said.
To learn more about Erica and Max Scherzer’s efforts to assist animals in need, and for information on how to help, visit humanerescuealliance.org/max.