There are very few videogame animals as famous as Dogmeat. Introduced in the original Fallout, the canine companion was a massive pain in the ass but also a very good boy (as all dogs are), leading many players to go to extreme lengths to protect him from his own tendency toward self destruction.
Dogmeat has been a Fallout staple since then, appearing in every main series game—not always the same dog, naturally, as Fallout 1 and 4 are separated by more than a century, but the same sort of spiritual presence: A tough, loyal, uncomplaining companion who we will all take many bullets for, without hesitation. The most recent version of Dogmeat, in Fallout 4, was actually based on a real-life dog named River.
Sadly, River died in June: His owner, Fallout 4 lead level designer Joel Burgess, shared a touching eulogy on Twitter that made River sound very much like her videogame counterpart: "Her intentions were pure, but her judgment wasn't always perfect."
To honor River's passing, Bethesda and Microsoft donated $10,000 to the Montgomery County Humane Society, and shared a link for others who would like to contribute as well. Montgomery County in Maryland includes the town of Rockville, the headquarters of Bethesda Softworks.
DOGMEAT FOREVER 💚In honor of River, Xbox and @BethesdaStudios are donating $10,000 to the Montgomery County Humane Society.If you also would like to join us in donating, you can right here: https://t.co/LD6ZDk6dov https://t.co/TiiYZ7Lq1QJuly 7, 2021
The Humane Society is funded solely through donations and revenues generated by private programs. The services it offers include animal rescue and adoption, low-cost clinics for spaying and neutering, microchipping, and vaccinations, a pet food pantry, and educational programs.
The Montgomery County Humane Society said in response to the donation that it was "honored to be a part of River's legacy."
Thank you, @Xbox and @BethesdaStudios! MCHS is honored to be a part of River’s legacy. 🐾❤️ https://t.co/LlALqNemCRJuly 7, 2021