The Olympic skier announced the sweet news on Thursday when he shared a photo of his new pup, Birdie, on Instagram. The newest addition to his family comes two months after the couple’s dog, Beemo, died of a heart condition in May.
“The day Matt and I visited the horrifying dog meat farm in South Korea we witnessed a mother dog giving birth to a litter of pups. The people at @hsiglobal told us that had they not been there filming my visit nobody would’ve seen the pups immediately and they likely would’ve died in the brutal cold. Luckily though I saw them and they were rushed inside and saved,” the skier wrote on his Instagram Thursday. “A few weeks later when all 90 of the dogs on that farm (including Beemo) were flown to North America that mother and her newborn litter were the only ones that stayed behind because the pups were too young to travel.”
“After Beemo passed away I was feeling completely empty and I reached back out to the Humane Society International to find out what happened to that litter,” he explained.
Beemo had been saved from a dog meat farm in South Korea while the silver medalist was in PyeongChang for the 2018 Winter Olympics earlier this year.
Also among the dogs saved by the Humane Society International was Birdie. Kenworthy, 26, said he kept in contact with the organization and “began getting photo and video updates” on the puppies in the litter. Birdie, a 5-month-old Jindo/Labrador mix, was flown from South Korea to Washington, D.C. earlier this week.
Although Beemo will be missed, Kenworthy said that his new pup, who was named Birdie “because birds were one of Beemo’s favorite things in the world,” will keep the late pup’s legacy alive on Instagram, where he said he’ll post “pupdates” of the new canine.
“I was nervous that would seem disrespectful to Beemo’s memory but I actually LOVE the idea that both of my beautiful little girls will share the page,” he wrote.
Along with being an Olympian, Kenworthy is known for raising awareness for the dog meat trade and promoting animal awareness.
“Nothing in the world could ever replace Beemo or the love that we felt and still feel for her but Birdie has already stolen a new place in our hearts and we’re excited to be dog dads again,” Kenworthy wrote, sharing the hashtag #DogsAreFriendsNotFood.
Read more: people.com