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Celebrated sled dog Balto with Gunnar Kaasen. (Photo: Brown Brothers.) Norwegian immigrant Gunnar Kaasen was the musher on the dog team that successfully delivered diphtheria antitoxin to Nome, Alaska in 1925. Lead dog for that final leg of the 600-mile trip was the indomitable Balto.

Chips was the most decorated WWII war dog. During the invasion of Sicily, Chips and his handler were pinned down on the beach by a machine-gun team. Chips broke from his handler and jumped into the pillbox, attacking the gunners and forced them to surrendered to US troops. Later that day, he helped take 10 Italians prisoner. Despite his bravery he was stripped of all rank & medals, as superior officers didn’t think a dog deserved the same treatment as soldiers.

A World War I Hero: First American Dog to Enter German Territory

Judy was a ship's dog on board HMS Gnat & HMS Grasshopper during WWII. She helped save the lives of the crew following the sinking of the ship. Once captured by the Japanese, she helped the men in the POW camp. She struck up a friendship with Frank Williams, with whom she spent the rest of her life. She was the only dog to be registered as a WWII POW. She survived in the jungles of Sumatra after the guards had sentenced her to death. She was awarded the Dickin Medal.

Faith, church cat at Saint Augustine's Church, London. On September 6, 1940, Faith moved her single newborn kitten, Panda, from the warm upper floors of the church to the basement, just before the Germans began bombing the city. She and Panda were later rescued from the rubble by Father Henry Ross, and Faith was awarded a special medal for "steadfast courage in the Battle of London".

This dog was a registered prisoner-of-war in a Japanese POW camp. She saved men's lives by distracting guards when they were about to be punished and was awarded the Dickin Medal. We owe dogs a lot.

Rip the air raid warden dog - Rip was a very good dog who helped save lives during the Second World War. He was found as a stray by Air Raid Warden Mr E. King. The two became friends, and Rip accompanied Mr King on his rounds. He was not trained in search and rescue work, but he took to it instinctively, sniffing out people who had been buried in rubble after Luftwaffe bombings. In twelve months from 1940 to 1941 he is credited with saving the lives of over a hundred people.

Wounded twice—once by shrapnel and once by gas—Stubby participated in 17 battles.Stubby was promoted to the rank of sergeant, the first animal ever to be given a rank in the U.S. military. Not quite a person but still a personality and a hero.

Sweet baby & a hero! :) This Black Lab is named Treo. He was awarded the Dicken Medal by London’s Imperial War Museum. The Dicken Medal is given to honor the work of animals in war and conflict. Treo was awarded the medal when he sniffed out a string of bombs in the Helmand Province of Afghanistan in 2008. Way to go Treo!

Target: A heroic, bomb-sniffing stray dog that saved several human lives in war-torn Afghanistan, Target was brought back to the U.S. by Sgt. Terry Young. Sadly, Target escaped the yard, was taken to an animal shelter, and mistakenly euthanized. So sad, the shelter shouldn't have euthanized the dog without holding him for lost and found...

NOVA When Nova was at the animal shelter, the staff spotted the smart dog's obsession with searching for things. They suggested for her to become trained as a bomb-sniffing hound. She then joined the Townsville-based 3CER and was a popular addition to the task force in Afghanistan. A month before she died, Nova took part in Operation Baz Panje, one of the largest air mobile missions in Uruzgan. The soliders were heartbroken when she passed away, but held a ceremony in her honor

Simon, a cat who won a Dickin Medal. He was the ships cat aboard HMS Amythest during the Yangtze incident.

Simon, a cat who won a Dickin Medal. He was the ships cat aboard HMS Amythest during the Yangtze incident.

The unsung heroes of war: A German cavalry horse gets stuck in Russian mud. Tens of thousands of these magnificent animals perished on the Eastern Front.

In this photo released Thursday Oct. 25, 2012 by The People's Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA) who are the awarding body responsible for the Dickin Medal for animal gallantry. Crossbred collie dog named Rob, that made over 20 parachute jumps while on secret war-work, and took part in the North African landings, after being presented with the Dickin Medal for animal gallantry, in this Feb. 13, 1945 file photo.

Sarbi, the 10-year-old Labrador-Newfoundland mix, earned himself a Purple Cross after serving as a bomb-sniffing dog in Afghanistan. Sarbi went missing for more than a year during his service. Luckily, 13 months later, an American special-forces soldier found the brave dog in a remote part of the province.

This is a undated Ministry of Defence handout photo made available on Thursday Oct. 25, 2012 of Lance Corporal Liam Tasker and his Springer spaniel mix Theo. Tasker, 26, died in a firefight with insurgents in March 2011, and Theo suffered a fatal seizure hours later. Tasker's mother, Jane Duffy, says the pair were inseparable. She's convinced Theo died of a broken heart.

K-DOG THE DOLPHIN Not only are dolphins one of the smartest animal species in the world, they are also naturally reliable and trustworthy. The Navy depends on dozens of dolphins to help out in the sea. This bottlenose dolphin named K-Dog works with his handler Sgt. Andrew Garrett in the Arabian Gulf. Because dolphins have keen sonar (they can discern a quarter from a dime when blindfolded), they are invaluable minesweepers.