Dogs are amazing creatures! They are truly man's best friend.
Dogs perform many roles for people, such as hunting, herding, pulling loads, protection, assisting police and military, companionship, and, more recently, aiding handicapped individuals.
Dogs also have displayed heroism throughout history. They are perhaps the first animals domesticated by humans, and have long lived by our side. Most dog owners attest to their loyalty, affection and faithfulness. Some dogs though, through self-sacrifice and valor have made names for themselves in our history books. Their very names suggest faithfulness and courage.
Entire breeds are often associated with specific tasks. The Dalmatian is closely associated with firehouses, especially in the U.S. German Shepherds have old ties to law enforcement, and the St. Bernard, with whiskey barrel bouncing about its neck, is known for saving many a man, woman, and child lost in snowy mountains.
Click on the links to the left to read/see some of their stories.
In the winter of 1925, the city of Nome, Alaska, was stricken with diphtheria. There were not enough supplies to combat the illness, nor were any supplies able to be brought in from outside. An amazing effort was undertaken by several sled dog teams and mushers, to bring the life-saving serum from Nenana over 600 miles to Nome. On February 2, 1925, Gunnar Kaasen was first in the serum run to reach Nome.
A bronze statue was erected at Central Park in New York City, honoring the lead dog of Gunnar Kaasen’s team, named “Balto”. The epitaph upon the statue is:
“Dedicated to the indomitable spirit of the sled dogs that relayed antitoxin six hundred miles over rough ice, across treacherous waters, through Arctic blizzards from Nenana to the relief of a stricken Nome in the winter of 1925. Endurance — fidelity — intelligence.”
“Hachiko” is one of the most revered Akitas of all time. He was born in 1923 and was owned by Professor Eizaburo Ueno of Tokyo. Professor Ueno lived near the Shibuya Train Station in a suburb of the city and commuted to work every day on the train. Hachiko accompanied his master to and from the station each day.
On May 25, 1925, when the dog was 18 months old, he waited for his master’s arrival on the four o’clock train. But he waited in vain; Professor Ueno had suffered a fatal stroke at work. Hachiko continued to wait for his master’s return. He traveled to and from the station each day for the next nine years. He allowed the professor’s relatives to care for him, but he never gave up the vigil at the station for his master. His vigil became world renowned, and shortly after his death, a bronze statue was erected at the train station in his honor.
When a family could no longer keep their Basenji, they found him a new home on a farm 30 miles away. However, within a few days, the tenacious dog found his way all the way back home.
In June 2006, a trained Beagle assistance dog was credited with saving the life of its owner after using his owner’s mobile phone to dial an emergency number.
In the 1950s, John Paul Scott and John Fuller began a 13 year study into canine behavior. As part of this research, they tested the scenting abilities of various breeds by putting a mouse in a one acre field and timing how long it took the dogs to find it. The Beagles found it in less than a minute, while Fox Terriers took 15 minutes and Scottish Terriers failed to find it at all.
In a nearly unbelievably story titled “Dog Makes Cell Phone Call to Save Owner’s Life”, readers learn about Belle, a beagle who literally bit “911″ into Kevin Weaver’s cell phone after the diabetic man collapsed from a seizure.
Said Weaver, “there’s no doubt in my mind that I’d be dead if I didn’t have Belle”, who became the first canine to win VITA’s Wireless Samaritan Award. Evidently, the pooch had been trained to bite down on the phone’s keypad in the event of an emergency!
In February of 2007, eight mountain climbers were caught by a snowstorm on Mt. Hood in Oregon. Climbing down, three of the group fell off a ledge along with Velvet, a black labrador. They were separated from the other five climbers, but continued climbing down. The group was forced to spend the night on the mountain before rescue could arrive. Velvet spent the night lying on each person in turn, helping to keep them warm in the storm.
“The dog probably saved their lives” by lying across them during the cold night, said Erik Brom, a member of the Portland Mountain Rescue team. He described the wind in the canyon as “hellacious.”
Most people wouldn’t dare to go one-on-one with an alligator, but that’s exactly what Blue did to take home 2001 “Dog Hero of the Year” honors.
The Australian Blue Heeler saved Ruth Gay, his 85 year old owner, from an alligator attack behind her home. Reportedly, Ms. Gay had fallen while walking Blue. When a nearby gator lumbered over, threatening to attack, Blue charged into action and sparred with the gator long enough to scare it away.
Both Gay and Blue made full recoveries, and blue was awarded with doggie treats, cash, and a specially engraved Dog Hero food bowl.
In 1572, the Pug was chosen as the official dog of the House of Orange in Holland, when a silver Pug named Pompey saved the life of his master, William, Prince of Orange.
On the night of September 12, 1572, a body of Alva’s Spanish troops surprised Dutch William’s camp. Upon hearing enemy soldiers, Pompey licked William’s face and barked noisily until the prince awoke. William then grabbed Pompey, and ran to safety.
To his dying day, the Prince ever afterwards kept his dog in his bedchamber. To mark the whole event and the importance of Pompey, an effigy of Willliam and his pug is carved over William’s tomb in Delft Cathedral.
In Anchorage, Alaska in 1959, a female sled dog named Red fought a bloody battle with a polar bear to save the life of Col. E. Feathers, the Alaska Air Command.
The colonel met the 275 pound bear in the afternoon semi-darkness. The bear lunged and the colonel tried to make it to his quarters, but he could not get much traction in the snow. Just when it seemed the bear was on top of him, Red attacked the bear from the rear. While the bear was trying to kill Red, a member of the station staff slew the big beast with his revolver.
Red was mauled severely but survived.
Keith Chandler, who was paralyzed from the chest down in a car accident, was rescued by his two year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Sandy, when a fire broke out in his home.
The man yelled at his children to leave the house after he smelled the fire. He managed to roll himself off the bed and tried to drag himself by the elbows across the floor but was making little progress. Sandy rushed in from the garden, grabbed onto the top of his jumper (that’s sweater, for the USA folks) and began dragging Chandler to the door. She managed to get her owner outside. ”The whole room almost exploded just seconds after Sandy pulled me into the garden,” said Chandler.
The fire, which started in the kitchen, was so intense that it gutted the house in less than 30 minutes. “The dog undoubtedly helped this man get out of the house. He is severely paralysed and I think without the dog’s help we would probably be dealing with a fatality here,” said a spokesperson for the fire department.
Brutis was a 7 year old golden retriever when he became a hero in 2004. That’s when the loveable pooch snatched up a coral snake as it was slithering dangerously close to a young child. Brutis suffered a near-deadly bite from the snake in the process.
His heroics did not go unnoticed. Brutis was promptly flown to Los Angeles to receive the National Hero Dog award. Said the committee who awarded the medal, “when we give an award like this, we’re looking for something extra, something that would make people wonder why a dog would do what he did.”
French Bulldogs became favorites of the Parisian “Belles De Nuit”, the street walkers. One reason for this is that when strolled, the exotic looking dogs brought attention to their owner, and gave potential customers a legitimate reason to chat with her. Another is that the docile breed was content to nap for short stretches when brought to hotel rooms, without making a fuss. Breed historians can still sometimes turn up notorious “French Postcards” bearing images of scantily clad French prostitutes posing with their little “Bouledogues Français”.
The aura of notoriety that ownership of the little dogs conveyed made them a fashionable way for the well-to-do classes to show off how daring they could be, and they soon became favorites of the “artistic” set across Europe.
During World War II, shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, a shepherd mix dog named Chips was donated to the war effort by his owner Edward J. Wren of Pleasantville, NY. At that time, many citizens donated their dogs for duty.
Chips was soon on the front lines in Africa, Italy, France, and Germany, acting as a tank guard dog. Several times he alerted his handler to an impending attack. At one point, he dragged a phone cable across a raging battlefield, so that his platoon could call for backup.
The one event for which Chips is best known happened on a beach in Sicily. When he and his handler’s unit came under fire from a hidden pillbox of Italian soldiers, Chips sprang from his handler and dove straight into the enemy emplacement. The soldiers inside came out moments later and surrendered, with Chips behind them. That would have been impressive enough, but later that night, he also alerted his squad to some approaching Italians, who were promptly captured as well.
Chips was the most decorated dog of World War II, receiving a Silver Star and a Purple Heart. However, the awards were rescinded later when the Commander of the Order of the Purple Heart complained that the awards were demeaning to human soldiers. This marked the end of the practice of awarding medals to military dogs, making Chips the last canine to be officially decorated.
Everyone loves those heart-pounding movie scenes where the hero escapes a burning pit seconds before it explodes, but it’s not so fun in real life.
That’s what Kathie, a paralyzed parapalegic, learned when her Rotweiller, Eve, pulled her by the ankles from her burning, smoldering truck. Upon pulling Kathie out, Eve proceeded to drag her to a nearby ditch, just far enough away to avoid the explosion of her vehicle. After firemen cleared the scene, Eve was awarded the Stillman Award for her bravery.
Buddy, a German Shepherd who lives in Caswell Lakes, Alaska, with his 23-year-old human Ben, and Ben’s parents, is a hero.
Ben lives with his family in an area of winding country roads. He was working in a workshop in a shed when a heater touched off a fire fueled by chemicals in the shop.
When Ben got Buddy outside, he told the dog, “We need to get help.” Buddy took off running. The dog dashed off and down the road, looking for someone to help.
After being called by neighbors, a Trooper was dispatched to the fire, but his GPS froze up on him, and he was semi-lost in the twisting rural roads and about to take a turn in the wrong direction when he saw a dog in the road.
It was Buddy. Buddy was able to get the Trooper’s attention, and led the Trooper through the winding country roads to the fire-engulfed home. When the Trooper got out of his car, Buddy jumped up and made sure the Trooper continued to the house.
Buddy then retreated into the woods, seeing that his work was done.
Is Ginny a traitor to canine’s everywhere, or an undisputed hero?
The 300 cats who attended her memorial service would probably say the latter, paying homage to a dog who endangered herself on multiple occasions to save dying or stranded cats from peril.
On one particularly remarkable occasion, Ginny threw herself against a vertical pipe at a construction site so that it would topple and the stranded cats inside could escape. Another time, Ginny suffered severe cuts on her paws to find an injured cat inside a box of broken glass.
Genie was a rescued Greyhound at the age of 11. She was newly retired after 5 years of running and 5 years of breeding. Her new owners Neena and Tim Derf were very happy with their new dog.
Genie was taken to the vet for her annual shots on Sunday afternoon. That night, at about 3:30 A.M., she came into the bedroom and woke Neena. Since she never did that, Neena thought Genie was sick from the shots, and got up to take her out. To her shock, she found her husband, passed out at the other end of the house. He had an internal bleeding problem, and had hemorrhaged to the point that he was ten minutes from death.
Yes, Neena would have slept through it, if it weren’t for their miracle girl, Genie!
In a truly heartwarming story, a four year old Golden Retriever was credited with saving a paralyzed man who got his wheelchair stuck in the middle of a muddy field.
When Gareth Jones found himself unable to move, the former soldier’s service dog was ready to answer the call, dutifully pulling the rope Jones threw to him until the wheelchair was pulled free. Said Jones, “He didn’t let go until I was clear. He knew exactly what he was doing.”
Honey was the 2006 Dog of the Year, an award she earned by saving her owner from a violent car accident.
When she and Michael Bosch found their SUV rolled over and stuck upside down in a deep ravine, Bosch was trapped and knew that Honey was his only hope. With all his strength, he managed to release the dog and hope that she would somehow find help. Sure enough, the then 5 month old English Cocker Spaniel got the attention of a man about a half-mile away and brought him to the scene of the accident. Rescuers concluded that had it not been for this, Bosch would have died.
In 1210, when the German castle Ordensritterburg was besieged by Slavic invaders, the castle fell and its inhabitants, including the Lord, were slaughtered. However, the Lord’s infant son was saved by one of the castle’s Hovawarts. In spite of being wounded itself, the dog dragged the tiny child to a neighboring castle, and thus saved the boy’s life.
This young boy, Eike von Repkow, grew up to become a legendary figure in the history of German law. He later published the Sachsenspiegel, the oldest Code of Law to survive from medieval Germany. Not surprisingly, the Hovawart is mentioned with praise. The Schwabenspiegel, a law text published in 1274 and based on Eike von Repkow’s Sachsenspiegel, lists the Hovawart among the dogs you have to replace and pay restitution for if they are killed or stolen.
On April 29th, 2007, a Jack Russell named “George” saved five children in New Zealand from an attack by two Pit Bulls. George was reported to have charged at the Pit Bulls, holding them at bay long enough for the children to get away. Sadly, George’s injuries were so severe that he did not live.
George was awarded a medal of bravery posthumously by the SPCA, an honor normally reserved for humans. A former U.S. Marine also donated a Purple Heart award he received for service in Vietnam to George’s owner.
Don’t let the name fool you. There was nothing “junior” or small about this dog’s effort.
Everyone in the Davilmar household, including the family’s half-dozen visiting relatives, were asleep. As fire tore through the household in the middle of the night, the 14-month old shihtzu mix started barking and did not relent until everyone was awake and out of the house.
It’s not every day that a dog saves its family from armed pirates at sea, but amazingly, that’s exactly what Kankuntu did.
When Peter Lee found himself about to be hijacked on his 41 foot yacht by armed pursuers, the dog, who “thinks he’s a lion”, leapt right into action, furiously attacking the gunmen until one of them shot and stabbed the pooch between his shoulder blades.
Amazingly, the dog was nursed back to the health, and the family continued with their voyage.
Hurricane Katrina was a miserable occurance for everyone down south, but inspiring stories of heroism have helped give victims something to smile about.
That’s certainly the case with Katrina, the ironically named Black Labrador who saved a drowning man before rising flood waters were able to claim his life.
The dog, who was later rescued herself by rescue teams, was honored at that year’s Genesis Awards with a standing ovation.
Kaze earned top honors from the Contra Costa Sheriff’s Department for saving the life of a woman in her late 20′s, reported missing a few days earlier.
On his first-ever rescue mission, Kaze located the missing woman under a bridge. The woman was in a coma that authorities later reported would have killed her within the hour if she had not been found. Luckily, the woman was rushed to a hospital, where she recovered after a week’s time.
The high intelligence, initiative and self-direction of Labradors in working roles is evidenced by individuals such as “Endal”, who during a 2001 emergency is believed to be the first dog to have placed an unconscious human being in the recovery position without prior training. Endal then obtained the human’s mobile phone, “thrust” it by the human’s ear on the ground, and fetched a blanket, before barking at nearby dwellings for assistance.
A number of Labradors have also taught themselves to assist their owner in removing money and credit cards from ATMs without prior training.
One of the oldest examples of canine heroism is a dog named Delta, who was found alongside the remains of a young boy in the ruins of Pompeii. The remains show clearly that Delta was trying to protect his master, a young boy named Serverinus, from the devastation caused by the volcano.
A collar around Delta’s neck revealed that this was not the first time he had tried to save Severinus. Delta saved Severinus three times. Once he pulled the boy out of the ocean and saved him from drowning. Another time Delta fought off four robbers who assaulted Severinus. And finally, Delta protected the boy from an angry wolf they encountered at the sacred grove of Diana.
His last act of heroism at Pompeii, however, was not enough. But, almost miraculously, Delta’s heroism is immortalized in the ruins of Pompeii.
The monks stationed at Great Saint Bernard Pass near the Swiss-Italian border originally bred the massive Saint Bernard. The monks hoped to create a breed capable of locating and saving lost travelers as they made their way through the dangerous mountain pass. And, a fine job the Saint Bernards did. Saint Bernards are capable of picking up a human scent from over 2 miles, and can locate a body beneath ten feet of snow.
The monks most famous dog was Barry, said to have saved over 40 lives. Renowned for his bravery and compassion, a statue of Barry stills stands at the Cimetière des Chiens pet cemetery in Paris, and his body is preserved at the Natural History Museum in Berne, Switzerland.
When Sir Peers Legh was wounded in the Battle of Agincourt, his Mastiff stood over and protected him for many hours through the battle. Although Legh later died, the Mastiff returned to Legh’s home and was the foundation of the Lyme Hall Mastiffs. Five centuries later this pedigree figured prominently in founding the modern breed.
You don’t get to be the 2008 Dog of the Year for nothing, and this pooch is no exception.
Maya took home this year’s honors for courageously saving Angela Marcelino, her human, from a vicious male attacker.
The Pitbull’s act of bravery earned some high praise from the Animal Miracle foundation, who was happy to report that “the Pitbull breed can be hero dogs just like any other breed.”
When a masked intruder made his way into the Patel household, Moti wasted little time, leaping to his feet and barking to draw the gunman’s attention. Faced with the angry pooch, the gunman shot him and ran off without harming any of the Patels. Luckily, this furry hero made a full recovery!
Cats and dogs are always made out to be enemies, but this not always so!
Enter Napoleon, the English Bulldog who defied the poor swimming skills of his breed to swim deep out into a lake and rescue a burlap sack containing 6 abandoned kittens! While two of the kittens didn’t make it, the other four were nursed back to health, leading to a hero’s welcome for Napoleon back at the local adoption center.
All dogs are known for their super-sharp hearing, but most of them don’t win awards for it.
But when Nellie, a 4 year old Black Labrador Retriever, used her high-powered ears to detect an intruder in time to save her severely deaf owner, it would’ve been a crime to give the Heroic Hearing Dog of the Year award to anyone else! The charity that trained Nellie couldn’t have been more proud.
Neo is a Siberian Husky, who, as an 11-month old, earned his hero stripes by getting human help for his imperiled owner, Marci Snead.
When Snead, a diabetic with fibromyalsia and rheumatoid arthritis, went into hypoglycemic shock, Neo ran to the nearest building. There, he grabbed the attention of several people who followed him back to where Snead had fallen. Within moments, an ambulance was called and the woman was taken to a nearby hospital, where she recovered completely.
During a severe blizzard in Villas, New Jersey, 11-year old Andrea Anderson was blown into a large snowdrift about 40 feet from her home. Disoriented, blinded by the blowing 60 mile per hour winds full of snow, she began to scream for help.
Villa, a 1-year old black Newfoundland puppy belonging to Mrs. Lynda Veit, heard Andrea’s cries. Villa leaped over a 5 foot fence surrounding her, and ran 80 feet to the snowdrift, found Andrea, and licked her face. Then Villa circled the girl to clear the snow entrapping her. Once Andrea was free, Villa cleared a path for her through the blinding snow, and led her to the front door of Andrea’s house.
Villa was Ken-L Ration Dog of the Year in 1983.
Gander, formerly named Pal, was acquired as a mascot, by the Royal Rifles of Canada, who were stationed in Gander, Newfoundland during World War II. Pal had accidentally scratched a child and his owners, upset by the incident, offered him to the Royal Rifles.
In 1941, the Royal Rifles of Canada were sent, along with Gander, to Hong Kong Island to defend the island against Japanese attacks. On one occasion, Gander charged Japanese soldiers as they were approaching some wounded Canadian soldiers; most likely saving the soldiers’ lives.
Gander’s final act of bravery cost him his own life, but saved the lives of the men he was with. It was on December 19, 1941, during the Battle of Lye Mun on Hong Kong Island. During the attack, Gander picked up a grenade that had landed next to a group of soldiers and carried it away. The grenade exploded, instantly killing Gander.
Gander was posthumously awarded the Dickin Medal on October 27, 2000. Gander’s medal is on permanent display in the Hong Kong section of the Canadian War Museum.
Nyla risked her own life to save her human owner from the threat of fire.
When Sheila found herself surrounded by smoke and flames, unable to see in front of her, Nyla courageously guided her toward a nearby door, barking whenever Sheila lost track of her. While her home and belongings were destroyed, Sheila was guided to safety.
Sheila noted that “Nyla could have left anytime. Instead, she chose to stay and risk her own life and face death to save me.”
While Ray Fogg was on a winter duck hunting excursion, his Yellow Labrador Retriever, Patty, saved him from drowning.
Fogg’s boat capsized and dumped the him and his fellow hunter into the frigid North Atlantic waters. Patty allowed Fogg to grab hold of her tail while she vigorously doggy-paddled against the powerful current. They made it all the way to the nearest land, where they were rescued by game wardens later on that evening.
Brenda Owen was walking her Labrador Retriever, Penny, by the Elwy River in St. Asaph, Wales, when she spotted a wheelchair on the shore and a body in the water. She shouted, “Fetch!” and Penny did.
Penny jumped into the water and dragged the woman back to the riverbank, where a man then helped her bring the woman back on to shore. The woman was injured and unconscious, and was taken to a hospital. The woman had been reported missing from a nearby home.
In the spring of 1942, the British started using, what they called “para pups”, with their first airborne army and SAS units. The para pups were trained to lead soldiers behind enemy lines, sniff out the enemy, and give silent warning and direction to the patrol.
One particular para pup, named Rob, was a mongrel black and white dog with a patch over one eye. He worked with the SAS. Rob would be parachuted in behind enemy lines, and would wait for his owner to find him and remove his parachute. Rob made a total of 12 jumps into enemy territory. He never failed to alert his handlers for the many months while they were behind enemy lines in both North Africa and later in Italy.
A Lakewood, Colorado police dog, named Rocky, made headlines in 2002 for chasing down a burglar. Rocky took a bullet in the process, and ultimately helped to capture the 20 year old thug.
According to Darren Mauer, the dog’s officer/partner, the bullet to Rocky’s paw never slowed him down. “He was the same dog after as he was before.”
When Michael Hingson found himself on the 78th floor of the World Trade Center on September 11, it took some unexpected heroics from his Yellow Labrador Retriever to save his life.
When the building started to sway and the air filled with choking smoke, Roselle lead Michael to safety, guiding him through the crumbling office toward a stairwell. It wasn’t easy for Michael or Roselle, who was panting and extremely thirsty, but the two managed to reach safety just moments before Tower 1 collapsed.
A Rottweiler, Reona, saved a little 5-year old girl, Vivian Cooper, during an earthquake. Vivian has epilepsy, and over-excitement could bring on a life threatening seizure.
During the earthquake, Reona left her house, and jumped over three fences to come to the aid of Vivian. Reona entered Vivian’s house, and pushed the little girl up against the kitchen cabinets and held her there. Vivian held onto Reona, with her head buried into the big dog’s fur. Just moments after Reona pushed Vivian out of the way, a large microwave was shaken off the top of a refrigerator, falling in the exact spot that Vivian had just been.
For her heroism Reona was the Ken-L Ration Dog Hero of the Year in 1989.
Shana, is a half wolf dog and half German Shepherd, who saved an elderly couple from a treacherous snow storm.
When Shana found Norman and Eve trapped by the snow, she went to work. She diligently dug out a tunnel, through which she pulled the couple back to the safety of their home.
Shelby became a hero for saving two adults and two children from carbon monoxide poisoning.
With her keen sense of smell, Shelby was the first to detect the rising carbon monoxide levels. While the rest of the family was asleep, Shelby nudged each of them out of their sleep and refused to stop barking, scratching, and whining until the family was safely outside. Luckily, each family member was treated at a nearby hospital and made a full recovery.
“In my eyes, and in the eyes of my family, Shelby is more than a hero; she is a lifesaver, a guardian angel,” said Joleen Walderbach.
Admiral Robert Peary of the United States Navy was aided by the Siberian Husky during his expeditions in search of the North Pole. According to records, the Siberian Husky’s role in this feat cannot be over estimated.
In 1933, Navy Rear Admiral Richard E. Byrd brought about 50 Siberian Huskies with him on an expedition in which he hoped to journey around the 16,000-mile coast of Antarctica. Called Operation Highjump, this historic trek proved the worth of the Siberian Husky due to its compact size and greater speeds. Many of these Huskies were assembled and trained at Chinook Kennels in New Hampshire.
Siberian Huskies also served in the United States Army’s Arctic Search and Rescue Unit of the Air Transport Command during World War II.
MSNBC tells the story of Toby, a golden retriever who heroically saved owner Debbie Parkhurst from choking to death on an apple in her Maryland home. When it became apparent that Debbie was choking, Toby leapt hard onto her chest and forced the lodged morsel to come loose from her throat.
For his efforts, Toby took home a share of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ “Dog of the Year” award in 2007.
Trakr is a rescue dog. Together with police officer James Symington, Trakr helped dig through some 30 feet of unstable debris at the World Trade Center “ground zero” site and locate the last human survivor of the attack.
The dog’s bravery was so celebrated that he is going to be cloned for use in other police rescue forces!
Tripod, the Rat Terrier with a dysfunctional leg, was on her way to living in a shelter last year when she was taken in by John and Mary Smith. The Smiths are both disabled and felt a connection with Tripod.
In March, Tripod was sleeping in their bedroom when a fire broke out. With their blankets already on fire, Tripod urged the couple to hurry. But Mary was overwhelmed with the task of getting herself mobile, plus her husband into his wheelchair. She was ready to give up hope – accepting their fate; however, Tripod had other plans.
“Tripod kept pulling on my gown getting me out and I said, ‘honey, please go on, go on,’ and she wouldn’t do it,” said the elderly woman. “She stayed right with me the entire time.”
The Smiths escaped the fire without injury, and Tripod was treated to pedicure and massage from a local dog groomer as a reward for her heroism.
In November 1989, Guiness Book of World Records recognized a Mastiff from England named Zorba as the heaviest dog in the world, at over 343 pounds.
Zorba stood 37 inches at the shoulder and was 8 feet 3 inches from the tip of his nose to the tip of his tail. He set the Guiness Book record when he was 8 years old, and about the size of a donkey.
Another huge contender was a Saint Bernard named Benedictine. His weight was provided, not by direct measurement, but by “successive studies”, and his weight is reported to be between 336 and 357 pounds.
Snoopy, of the comic strip Peanuts, has been promoted as “the world’s most famous Beagle”.
In August 2004, a Great Dane named “Gibson” from Grass Valley, California, was recognized by the Guiness Book of World Records as the world’s tallest dog, measuring 42.2 inches at the withers.
The loveable giant gained attention with international and national press, tv appearances and events. Gibson even co-authored his very own book, entitled “Gibson Speaks”. The book gives insight to the life and journey of the world’s tallest dog.
Gibson’s was certified and worked as a therapy and special needs training dog.
Size is no barrier to a dog determined to protect her family. Zoey, a Chihuahua, weighed only five pounds, but she rose to the occasion when needed.
One-year-old Booker West was playing in his grandparent’s backyard in Colorado when a rattlesnake struck at him! Zoey sprang into action, putting herself between the snake and the toddler. She sustained bites and was rushed to a veterinary hospital. Her head swelled and she almost lost an eye, but with anti-venom treatment, Zoey made a full recovery.
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