CLEVELAND (WJW)– Less than four months into his retirement, Swagger passed away, the Cleveland Browns confirmed.
The former team mascot, a 145-pound bull mastiff, suffered a stroke Friday afternoon, according to his handler Justin McLaughlin. The dog battled cancer for the past year.
“We will always remember him as the most loving dog we have ever encountered. His love was felt by thousands of people literally all over the world!” McLaughlin said.
Swagger joined the Browns in 2014. He ran through the tunnel at FirstEnergy Stadium before every home game and posed for photos with fans on Dawg Pound Drive. He retired in October and that’s when his son, SJ, took over.
The Browns tweeted the following: “We’re heartbroken by the passing of our beloved mascot, Swagger. As a constant presence on gameday and the leader of the Dawg Pound, Swagger was a proud member of our team for 6 seasons. RIP.”
Swagger was born on July 20, 2013. He and SJ are from FD Farms in Rootstown, operated by Fred and Debby McLaughlin.