Though the year isn't even halfway over, it should come as no surprise to dog lovers everywhere that there's already a full roster of dog heroes of 2016. So if you’re a fan of courageous little guys and girls of the 4-legged variety, come on in and check out the heroics of some of the bravest pooches yet to have stepped up to the plate this year. From professional police dogs to everyday shelter pets with huge hearts, you’ll meet some of the best and brightest hero dogs that 2016 has yet to offer.
In our search for the most heroic dogs of 2016, we’ve chosen a group of exceptional pups of all breeds, sizes, and backgrounds whose various acts of altruism are destined to make you smile. We’ve got everything from stories of professional war dogs, one of whom recently received the highest military medal possible for an animal, to the tale of a reformed feral dog who rescued a surprising animal that came to be his best friend.So if you’re a fan of dogs, heroism, or just need a little nudge towards the restoration of your faith in goodness, come on in. Here you’ll find a series of heartwarming tales destined to put a brighten your day.
Dayko, the Dog Hero Who Gave His Life to Rescue Seven People
Heroic Deed: Four-year-old fire rescue dog Dayko went above and beyond the call of duty when he passed away from exhaustion after rescuing seven people from a massive earthquake in Ecuador. His funeral was attended by his two- and four-legged friends alike from the fire department and training academy.
Lucca, the War Vet Who Received a Rare Service Medal
Heroic Deed: When it comes to heroism, 12-year-old German shepherd Lucca has literally made a career out of it. Lucca completed more than 400 missions during her time in the US Marine Corps and even lost a leg while on an explosives hunting mission in Afghanistan in 2012. This year she received the esteemed Dickin Medal, the animal equivalent of the Victoria Cross, an honor shared throughout the past 73 years with only 29 other dogs, 32 World War Two messenger pigeons, three horses, and a cat.
Myrtle, the Pekingese Who Helped Rescue Her 80-Year-Old Neighbor
Heroic Deed: While out for a walk one day, Myrtle the hero Pekingese suddenly began barking and clawing insistently at an elderly neighbor's door. Upon investigating, her fur-mom discovered that there was indeed an 80-year-old woman inside who needed help after suffering a nasty fall.
Jedi, the Little Guy Who Saved His Diabetic Friend's Life
Heroic Deed: When seven-year-old Luke's blood sugar dropped dangerously low one night, his little diabetic alert dog named Jedi sprang into action. Jedi quickly ran to alert Luke's mom, who was able to give the boy the care she would otherwise have had no idea he needed.