Dog Hero Stories | Real Life Heroes

When I grew up one of the best shows on TV was The Littlest Hobo.  It was a Canadian TV show that followed a dog named “HOBO” through rescues and crime solving escapades episode after episode.  He really was the most amazing and cool dog you had every seen.  Now we all know the heroic tales of Lassie and how he saved Jimmy who had fallen down the well.  He was capable of relaying messages and able to rescue anyone in distress. Again another truly heroic dog.  All these dog hero stories are fiction, so the question is are there really true stories of dog rescuing people or is that just for TV?

*This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. Please see my disclosure.

Truly Brave Dogs

We all know that dogs our are best friends.  They follow us around and always want to be where ever we are.  Dogs are also thought to have the ability to sense danger before it even happens.

When we look at dogs evolution from wolves and that pack mentality, we know that when a dog becomes part of the family there is an emotional bond that is created.  They then include us as part of the pack.  When you are part of the pack you are protected and defended.

Let’s look at some truly brave real dogs:

KILO the Pit Bull during a home invasion was shot in the head during while chasing down the thief.  Lucky for KILO the bullet entered her head and came out her neck.  Amazingly after just 3 days at the Vet, KILO was out walking around.  A truly brave hero.

FIGO the service dog saw a bus heading toward his blind owner, he jumped in between the two and took most of the hit himself.  He saved his owners life, even after injuring himself in the process.

Kathie Vaughn a paraplegia was trapped inside her van when her van got fire.  She could not assemble her wheelchair to get out of the van.  Luckily her 104 pound Rottweiler EVE grabbed her by the leg and pulled her out, just before the van exploded.  Eve suffered from burned paws, while Kathie was not injured.

Just these 3 stories alone, show the unbelievable bravery that dogs have and the extraordinary lengths they will go to save you.

Sense Danger

Dogs as we know are brave and fearless, but what we also know about dogs is that they can sense danger.  They sense it even before we know there is any danger at all.  Call it a 6th sense.

Their sense or intuition of something that is about to happen, really is one of the most unbelievable characteristics.

Here are some examples of dogs that were able to alert their owners and families that danger was coming:

BABU the 12-year-old Shih-tzu tsunami survivor who alerted her 83 year old owner Tami before the tsunami hit to go outside for a walk.  The funny thing is that BABU never liked to go for walks.  While out on the walk she even made Tami climbs a hill, which they never did before.  Just as they reached the top of the hill, Tami turned and saw the tsunami wash away her house.  BABU saved Tami’s life.

In November 2016, MOLLY a blind golden retriever woke up suddenly at 2am because she sensed something was wrong. She woke up the family of 7 people with 4 cats and 2 dogs and saved them from a fire in the home.  Can you imagine a blind dog saving your life.  How unbelievable.


ROSELLE a yellow Labrador retriever who was a guide dog for his blind owner Michael.   On Sept 11, 2001 after the planes had just struck the towers when Roselle guided Michael down all the 1463 steps.  He miraculously led his owner through the smoke and chaos outside the tower, just before the building collapsed.
Saving Michael’s life.

woke his owner up in the middle of the night by jumping on the bed vigorously.  Duke was shaking uncontrollably. His behaviour shook the, so they decided to check on their 9 week old daughter and realized that she wasn’t breathing.  If Duke hadn’t woken them up, they would have just slept and not even realized that their baby wasn’t breathing.  He sensed danger and his instant reaction, saved the babies’ life.


Military Heroes

Now, many people join the military to protect and serve their countries.  But what about dogs.  Do they serve as a member of the military?  Yes they do.  They serve in all branches of the military.

Looking back in history, dogs have always been a part of big battles.  Even as far back as the Revolutionary War.  At first they were used just as a pack animals, but that evolved and led them to becoming  part of scouting, policing, combat and of course in detection.

Whether it’s a war, a disastrous scene from terrorism, or sniffing out bombs, dogs participate in saving human lives when there is a battle.


Let’s look at some dogs that have done heroic things in the name of war:

Sergeant STUBBY who served in the World War I.  While being in the trenches with his regiment, STUBBY would warn the soldiers of incoming shell attacks and was also able to locate wounded soldiers.  STUBBY at one point saved his entire regiment from a surprise mustard gas attack.  Single handily he attacked a German soldier by grabbing him by the seat of his pants who was acting as a spy.

CHIPS a German Shepherd/Collie/Husky mix dog was the most decorated military dog in World War II.   He received the Silver Star for valor and Purple Heart award for his injuries.  Two of the more famous stories of Chip took place in Sicily and happened on the same day.   Chip and his fellow troop members were pinned down by machine gun fire.  Chip all on his own rushed the machine gun capturing all 4 of the soldiers inside.  That same day when the soldiers were sleeping Chip alerted his troops that enemies were approaching.  Because of Chip they were able to capture every enemy soldier that had been approaching.  All of this was due to Chip quick action of alerting his troops of the ensuing danger.

CAIRO a modern day military dog, who is a member of the US Navy Seals.  Taking part in Operation Neptune Spear, Cairo was the only dog who was part of this mission to take down Osama Bin Laden.   He helped with ensuring the perimeter of the building and surrounding area was secure.  He was also responsible to ensure that no one escaped the compound and also make sure that no outside interference occurred.  Cairo was equipped with a special vest that included tactical equipment.


FRIDA the amazing dog that rescued 52 people for Mexico’s horrific earthquake.  She even looks like a hero all dressed up in her military vest, goggles and boots.


TRAKR a German Shepherd dog dug through debris from the World Trade Center with his handler.  His amazing heroic efforts lead him to discover the last survivor of the 911 attacks.

All of these dogs went above and beyond to save human lives at an incredible risk to themselves.   This just goes back to the selfless acts that dogs are willing to do to in the name of humanity.


There are dogs that may not be part of a military group or part of a war, but still have jobs that make them a different kind of hero. Helper Heroes I call them. Dogs that helped in some way to protect their owners from potential dangerous situations. Here are some amazing dog helpers:

DUKE the Vizsla is a dog that is trained to sniff out peanuts. His owner is deathly allergic to peanuts.   Duke is able to sniff out a small amount of peanuts in oil, dust, or butter.  Alerting his owner that there is a presence of peanuts just by sitting in front and blocking her from reaching for the allergen.  Duke refuses to move at all, saving his owners life every single day.

TOBY a golden retriever was awarded dog of the year for his heroics.  His owner Debbie was eating an apple, when the apple became lodged in her throat.   She realized she was choking and tried beating her own chest to dislodge the apple without success.  Toby jumped on her shoulders which knocked her down to the floor.  Toby then jumped up and down on Debbie’s back dislodging the apple.  Once the apple was dislodged Toby proceeded to lick Debbie’s face to keep her from losing consciousness.  Just a miraculous story of how Toby quick actions saved Debbie’s life.

There are many dogs that are raised and trained to help people with life threatening issues.

Dogs just continue to amaze

Many of us have dogs as a pet that provides us with companionship and make sure we have a partner beside us throughout our life’s journey.

Even though dogs are amazing companions that provide unconditional love to us every single day.  Dogs are capable of extraordinary acts of heroism.


All the dog hero stories I have shared, are of incredible dogs that risked their own life to save their owners. They do so without any thoughts of their own safety.

Whether it’s taking a bullet for their owner, or burning their paws in a fire by alerting that the house is on fire.  Dogs continue to amaze us with their intuition for danger, and incredible sense that something is about to happen before it does.

Remember that your dog could save your life one day.  You may not even know that it is possible, but these dogs have proven that it can happen when you least expect it.


16 thoughts on “Dog Hero Stories | Real Life Heroes”

  1. Hi Coralie! Ha ha ha! I woke up this morning to my wife and son watching a movie about a dog that talked. I tell you dogs do make us feel good. I too was a watcher of Lassie as a kid! Fond memories. The stories that you shared are incredible. We know that dogs are smart and caring. 

    But their actions in time of need are hard to believe. But not just that as a dog owner I can say. Their actions can be so on time. Are there any new good Dog series on that I may have missed? 

    Or movies that you might recommend? 

    • Hi Ceddy,

      It is really exciting to hear from someone that also enjoyed the amazing Lassie shows.  I absolutely love a good dog story, movie or book.  Dogs constantly amaze me.

      I absolutely loved the movie Hiachi a dog’s tale.  It features Richard Gere and is based on an true story.  You won’t be disappointed.

      Thank you so much for your wonderful feedback on my latest post. 


  2. What an inspiring article.  The loyalty and dedication of these dogs to their owners/handlers are amazing.  I am not an expert on the behaviors of dogs, but it seems there is an inherent ability for dogs to recognize danger in some manner and act on it.  I know the dogs in your post were all specifically trained.  Maybe we could learn a thing or two from them; take our inherent goodness and train to make it better.  The world would definitely be a better place.

    • Hi Mike,

      I am really glad that you enjoyed my post.  I agree that we could learn so much from dogs.  They always seem to be able to look ahead and not focus on what happened in the past. And their amazing skills of being able to sense danger really fascinate me.

      Thank you for sharing your feedback.


  3. Thanks for this great post.

    I knew dogs had certain intuitive abilities but I didn’t realize they could sense some dangers before they’re upon you.  I’ve also seen dogs in working situations (helping the disabled, drug and bomb detection, etc.), but I didn’t realize how many heroic stories were out there.  Nor did I realize that dogs would endure injuries to save their pack like that.  Some of them are truly amazing.

    I have my 2 dogs and I know they’d defend me to the end.  That said, I’m not sure if my Jack Russell could drag me to safety if necessary, lol.

    Thanks again.  Reading about such heroics brings a smile to my face.


    • Hi Scott

      Thank your for comments on my post. I am so happy that you found it as fascinating as I did, learning about all the fabulous dog stories that are out there.  I only touched on a few of them, there are so many more out their to read.

      I am laughing at your Jack Russell pulling you to safety, I worry if I was down and out, my Cockapoo would lick me to death. LOL!  I guess maybe our dogs aren’t quite super dogs.  

      If I can bring a smile to your face today, I am a happy camper.  Thanks


  4. I want to take a second to thank all of our service dogs. These animals serve a greater good with every fiber of their being without complaint. They are loyal and trusted companions. My dad was in law enforcement and there was not a K-9 Unit around that would not put their lives on the line for each other. I am proud that our Law enforcement community and military bury these heroes with full honors. Thanks for a great reminder and a powerful book recommendation.

    • Hello Andy,

      I completely agree with you that service dogs really do give everything they have to serving their partners.  Whether it’s just their loyalty or ability to sacrifice themselves in every way, it is just so impressive.

      I really appreciate your comments on this post and that it reasonated with your in such a great way.  My goal is to show people what dogs are really capable of and how remarkable they really are.

      Thank you.


  5. It truly amazes me how incredible these dogs are.  I have lost both of my dogs, both were 16 years old, one a rottweiler and the other a chihuahua.  Both were incredible dogs.  My rottweiler actually warned us about a gas leak in my house, when at the time it was odourless. She kept going by the basement door and whining; this was unusual for her because she didn’t like the basement and normally would not even go near the door.  She wouldn’t stop, so I opened the door and that’s when I smelt it.  We get gas delivery and the tank is in the basement.  I quickly got my niece who was staying with me, my chihuahua, and my beautiful heroine out of the house and called the gas company and they fixed before any real damage was done.

    If not for my dog, I don’t even want to think about it,  she saved all our lives that day.  I miss them so much that I have been hesitant about getting a new dog.  Yet reading your article reminds me how special having a dog is.  Have you had the opportunity to meet any of these amazingly heroic dogs? Have you yourself experienced the miracles that dogs do?


    • Hi Robert,

      I am so amazed reading your comments on my post.  These are the incredible stories that I want people to hear and continue to share.  Your dog absolutely saved your life that day and that is unreal.  The power of dogs is hard to dispute.  Your story is living proof.

      My 2 dogs have not done anything heroic yet, but I have not doubt that if something was to happen, I could count on them.  Personally I have never met any of these heroic dogs, but I am so happy to share their life stories.

      I am so sorry to here about your 2 dogs.  I understand the thought of not getting a “replacement” dog or dogs, but I sure hope you take the plunge again and get another dog.  You clearly sound like you miss them.  My boys are both old, so I think about them being gone everyday.  I feel your heartbreak.

      Thanks for sharing Robert.


  6. What a wonderful post on dogs that have gone the extra mile to help people in many different situations and in real life too. It is a heartwarming post and reinforces my belief in the heroes that dogs are for us all. They give unconditional love to us on a regular basis…

    Many people do not like dogs, but they perhaps do not realize just how helpful they can be in certain situations. This article really dives deep into the many times that dogs have saved the day, true heroes that many humans would not be. I have always love and respected dogs, I was raised that way…

    Dogs are there for us to enjoy as much as they enjoy being around us, and I have never regretted having them around me. Of course, they are more work than a cat (I have cats too), but they are more personable, and no cat that I know of will be the hero that a dog can be… Thanks for an inspiring and entertaining article! 

    • Hi Dave,

      It is very exciting to hear such great feedback on my post.  I hoped that people would really read it and understand how incredible dogs really are. 

      I know a ton of people that are not dog lovers at all and actually don’t much care for them.  I have such a hard time understanding how they don’t see the amazing things that dogs can give us. 

      You are so right in saying that dogs are there for us, as much as we are there for them.  It really is a 2 way street.

      Dogs really can save your life and these stories absolutely prove it.

      Thank you so much for sharing your comments.


  7. Great article, really enjoyed reading it!!
    I had a dog once, little Jack Russell /Fox Terrier, fiesty little thing and full of character!
    He used to steal our neighbours’ freshly delivered pizza from their door step, as they used to just leave the money for delivery guy, who would then just leave the pizza… Then he would whine at our front door to show off his prize!!!
    Not exactly heroic, haha!!!
    But dogs continually amaze with their abilities, senses, and loyalty!!

    • Hi Remy,
      Well I am still laughing at your dog story. Stealing pizza wow that is such a funny story. Quite smart of him though to know where the food is at. HAHA!
      Although it is not heroic…..still the cutest story. Thank you so much for sharing your story with me.
      I agree that dogs really do constantly amaze me.

  8. Hi Coralie, great post. I was aware that the dogs are extremely loyal and bold, but I did not know that are able to sense some dangers before they’re upon you. I think it is not a coincidence that dogs are employed in the police, fire brigade or army.

    • Hi There,
      Thank you so much for the comments on my post. Dogs really can sense things before we even know they happen. It really is amazing. Seeing dogs working with the police and military shows just how much they are trusted in the most dangerous situations and they seem to handle it very well.
      Thank you


Leave a Comment