Dog heroes: These remarkable stories prove just how special the human-canine connection really is

When dogs save lives.
When dogs save lives.

If you're an animal lover, you'll know all about the precious bond between a pet and their owner. Our furry companions are at times so close that we consider them as dear as our own children. 

But how do they feel about us? 

Countless stories suggest the feeling is more than mutual. 

We found three that brought us close to tears, as neither fire or wild animal could stop these dogs from coming to the rescue of their beloved humans, risking their lives to ensure their safety. 

If there was ever any doubt, here's proof that the love between animal and human is unquestionable. 

Golden retriever, Angel, lives up to her name

Austin Forman had no idea why their family dog, Angel, wasn't being her usual playful self as he gathered firewood one afternoon from the backyard of his home in British Columbia, Canada. 

Little did the 11-year-old know that a cougar was nearby, waiting to pounce. As the wild animal was about to charge at him, his Golden Retriever leaped to the rescue, throwing herself between the boy and the predator. 

"Angel came running as fast as she could and jumped over the lawnmower, and as she landed, the cougar jumped and tackled her," Austin explains in an interview with journalist Justine Ma from CBS News (watch the video below). 

Rushing inside his home, Austin told his mom what had happened. 

What ensued was a 20-minute fight between the dog and the wild animal, and the family was certain the dog would be killed. 

"I said to the kids, she's dead, she's gone, all we can do now is make sure that cougar doesn't get away from here and go after somebody else's pet or child in the neighbourhood," recounts mom Sherri Forman. 

The police were called in and arriving at the scene, and the officer shot at the cat, succeeding on his second attempt. Moments later Angel emerged, wounded but alive. 

"She was just laying there kind of motionless and then about 3 or 4 seconds later, started coughing up blood and got up," said officer Chad Gravelle. 

Thankfully, the injuries to the dog's head, eye, neck, and legs were not fatal, and only after making sure Austin was okay, the dog rested. 

"If the dog wouldn't have been out here, that cougar would've had my son, and we wouldn't be standing here," said an emotional Sherri. 

A grateful Austin said, "She's more than a best friend now, she's my guardian angel." 

Watch the emotional story below: 

Do you have a similar story? Tell us by emailing to and we could publish your letter.

A life for a life: a rescue dog returns the favour 

Haus had been with the DeLucas for all but two months when he showed up big time for his adopted family. 

An Eastern diamondback rattlesnake, one of the most dangerous snake species in North America, had somehow made its way to the backyard of the DeLucas' home, where 7-year-old Molly was playing.  

Before the snake could strike her, Haus came to the rescue. 

"She saw him jump back and go forward... next thing you know, there's blood, limping and crying," explains mom Donya DeLuca in an interview with ABC News

The German shepherd got bitten three times and needed emergency treatment. 

Because treatment was costly, the family took to GoFundMe to pay for the dog's 4-day anti-venom treatment. 

Receiving tremendous support, the DeLucas raised more than $50 000 in donations, exceeding the target amount of $28 000, and donated the excess funds to the shelter where Haus came from. 

An elated father, Adam DeLuca, says "For us [he] paid it forward by protecting my family."

Here's the full story: 

A boy, a pit bull and a fire

Nick Lamb was about to take an afternoon nap when a fire started inside his home in Indianapolis, USA. 

Home alone with Ace, his pit bull, the 13-year-old boy who is legally deaf was unable to hear the fire alarms sounding off inside his home as he'd switched off his hearing aid before he took a snooze.  

In an attempt to wake Nick, Ace began to lick his owner's face and managed to wake the boy. His family believe that if it wasn't for Ace, Nick could've died in the fire. 

"I took a deep breath and I went downstairs with Ace and the whole house was covered in smoke and fire," Nick told WISH-TV. 

"I love him a lot, more, now. He saved my life." 

View the clip below:


Do you have a similar story? Tell us by emailing to and we could publish your letter.

Read more: 

Sign up for our weekly newsletter to receive Parent24 stories directly to your inbox.  

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24