02/28/2014 01:53 pm ET

Meet Marlin, The Shedd Aquarium's New Rescue Dog Ambassador (PHOTOS)

You'd better up your game, dolphins, because a quartet of rescue dogs at Chicago's Shedd Aquarium might just be stealing your spotlight.

Earlier this month, the Shedd announced the arrival of Marlin, the fourth dog they've adopted from a local shelter. Starting this spring, Marlin will be another of the aquarium's canine ambassadors, meeting with visitors while they wait in line and warming up the crowd during the facility's "One World" aquatic shows. Until then, he's learning to follow instructions through positive-reinforcement training.

The aquarium says the dogs help show off the results of the "Shedd Way" of training and demonstrate how each of their visitors can work to develop stronger relationships with the animals in their lives, the aquarium says. The first of the dogs, all from local shelters and all also named after "Finding Nemo" characters, arrived at the Shedd last summer.

Here's everything you need to know about the Shedd's new addition to the canine crew and his furry friends:

  • Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    Meet Marlin.
  • Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    Marlin is a 2-year-old Labrador mix adopted from Chicago Canine Rescue by the Shedd last December. The aquarium says his original owners tried training him as a hunting dog, but gave him up to a shelter. New owners early last year thought he was too energetic and gave him up after 10 months.
  • Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    Now, Marlin's at the Shedd. He weighs about 70 pounds and loves to cuddle and gets along well with other dogs and humans alike. Here is Marlin with a trainer.
  • Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    He also loves treats.
  • Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    Marlin is the fourth rescue dog the Shedd has adopted to serve as aquarium ambassadors and is currently being trained to join his pals Bruce, Dory and Coral to help warm up crowds at the "One World" show.
  • Let's learn more about Marlin's buddies:
    Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    Bruce is a 1-year-old Pit bull-terrier mix from Chicago Animal Care and Control through Safe Humane Chicago. It is believed he was trained to be a fighting dog. He reportedly loves his trainings.
  • Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    Dory is a 2-year-old Shepherd mix adopted from the Anti-Cruelty Society. She loves greeting Shedd visitors and is always ready to play.
  • Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    And then there's Coral, a 1-year-old Airedale mix adopted from Chicago Animal Care and Control. She was given up due to behavioral problems, but has shown "remarkable progress" since the Shedd adopted her.
  • Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    Here's Marlin, hanging out with colleagues Dory and Coral.
  • Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez
    That's one happy, beautiful pup.


Dogs Are Family For Life