Vetstreet’s Top 5 Hero Animals of 2012
Each year there are those stories that stick with you about the amazing pets who saved the lives of people — or of fellow animals.
Below, we’ve rounded up five of our favorites from 2012. Which other hero animals do you remember from this year? Share your favorites with us in the comment section.
Rescue Dog Saves Baby’s Life
A Connecticut family credits Duke, a dog they rescued six years ago, with returning the favor by saving the life of their infant daughter. One night in October, Duke jumped on his owners' bed, shaking so uncontrollably that he woke Jenna Brousseau and her husband. Duke’s unusual behavior prompted Brousseau’s husband to check on Harper, their 9-week-old baby — and he discovered that she wasn’t breathing. “My husband called 911, and the ambulance came here, and it was because of our Dukie dog, who alerted us,” Brousseau told ABC News. "If Duke hadn't been so scared, we would have just gone to sleep." Thankfully, paramedics were able to revive Harper and save her from what could have been a case of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.
Cat Alerts Couple to Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Back in September, Tiger the tabby cat tipped off his grateful owners to the high levels of dangerous carbon monoxide in their home. The cat cried at the side of his owners’ bed until the Ohio couple, who had turned in early because they didn’t feel well, awoke. Michelle Ramsey recalled to the local TV station that Tiger came into the bedroom, "screaming in a cat voice.” By then, the Ramseys’ other felines were stumbling around the house. Ramsey called the veterinarian, who asked if she had recently turned on her furnace — and the cat’s owner realized that her home was filled with carbon monoxide. Tiger’s owners told Central Ohio’s 10 TV that the hero kitty “gets lots of love — a little bit more now.”
Golden Retriever Finds Boy With Autism
It took the unexpected skills of Autumn the Golden Retriever to find a 5-year-old boy who’d disappeared from his parents’ Wisconsin home on a sweltering July day. Hundreds of volunteers searched for Scott Meyer, who has autism and doesn't speak, for 20 hours before Jason Moser decided to take 8-year-old Autumn — who’s not a trained rescue dog — out to join the search. Autumn found little Scott just 200 yards from train tracks and a river, dehydrated and sunburned, reported Minnesota’s WCCO. The boy recovered at the hospital, and the family was extremely grateful to Autumn and Moser for their help.
Chihuahua Sniffs Out Three Missing Girls
Bell the Chihuahua certainly proves that little dogs can be heroes too. Three young girls were planning to take a dog named Lucy for a quick walk in their Atlanta neighborhood in August, but Lucy had other ideas. She pulled the trio toward a trail, and after following her, the girls became lost in the woods. Neighbors, police and firefighters searched for the kids, but when 3-year-old Bell — a neighbor’s dog who plays with the kids every day — was put on their trail, she lead searchers right to her pals. "She smelled them, her tail went to wagging, and she kept running and running until she got to them,” Bell’s owner, Carvin Young, told CBS Atlanta.
Pig Leads Owner to Injured Cat
Our heroes aren’t all dogs and cats. We’ll leave you with the story of this 1,000-pound hog who saved a cat. Colby the pig is a mascot and family pet at Perry Hill Farm in Bedford, N.H. After a devastating fire in September, the farm’s owners thought Gumbo the cat had died. But three days after the fire, Colby finished eating her breakfast and quickly took off toward the woods. The 9-year-old pig’s owners had rarely seen her move so fast, so they followed her — and Colby took them right to Gumbo. “She was on a mission,” farm owner Harriet Finks told ABC News. After spending a month recovering under the care of a veterinarian, Gumbo was reunited with Colby and the rest of his family.