4 Incredibly Loyal Dogs

Man's best friend

Photo: ABO PHOTOGRAPHY/Shutterstock

Good friends are loyal and stick by you no matter what, and that's especially true when it comes to man's best friend. We've found some of the most faithful dogs in history — from courageous canines who saved their owners' lives to dedicated dogs who stayed by their loved ones' sides even after death. Read on for some amazing tales of love and devotion that are sure to warm you from head to tail.

Hawkeye

Lisa Pembleton/Getty Images.

Hawkeye the Labrador retriever is proof that dogs, too, suffer from heartbreak. During Navy SEAL John Tumilson’s funeral in 2011, Hawkeye ambled up to his owner’s coffin and dropped to the ground with a heaving sigh. Tumilson’s cousin, Lisa Pembleton, snapped this photo of the devoted dog and posted it on her Facebook page, and the heartbreaking photo was soon shared around the world.

Hachiko

Wikimedia Commons.

Hidesamuro Ueno brought his dog, Hachiko, to Tokyo in 1924, and every day when he left for his teaching job, Hachiko would stand by the door and watch him go. Then at 4 p.m. the Akita would arrive at Shibuya Station to meet his owner. A year later Ueno died of a stroke at work, but Hachiko continued to return to the train station at 4 p.m. every single day, searching for his owner’s face amid the slew of passengers getting off the train. Eventually, the stationmaster made the dog a bed at the station and began leaving him bowls of food and water.

Hachiko returned to the train station every day for 10 years until he died in 1935, but in a way, the dedicated dog remains at the station. A year before his death, Shibuya Station installed a bronze statue of Hachiko, and although the original statue was melted down during World War II, a new version was created in 1948 by the original artist’s son.

Dorado

Photo: Herwig Kavallar/Wikimedia Commons [CC by 1.0]

On Sept. 11, 2001, Omar Eduardo Rivera, a blind computer technician, was working on the 71st floor of the World Trade Center with his guide dog, Dorado. When the hijacked plane hit the tower, Rivera knew it would take him a long time to evacuate the building, but he wanted his Labrador retriever to have a chance to get out so he unclipped his leash in the crowded stairwell. “I thought I was lost forever — the noise and the heat were terrifying — but I had to give Dorado the chance of escape. So I unclipped his leash, ruffled his head, gave him a nudge and ordered Dorado to go,” Rivera said.

Dorado was swept downstairs by the mass of evacuating people, but a few minutes later Rivera felt the dog nuzzling his legs — Dorado had come right back to his side. Dorado and a co-worker then helped Rivera climb down 70 flights of stairs, which took nearly an hour. Soon after they escaped the tower, the building collapsed, and Rivera says he owes his life to his faithful dog.

Lady

Photo: Rodrigo A. Caetano/Flickr [CC by 2.0]

Lady the golden retriever was 81-year-old Parley Nichols’ constant companion for six years, and the dog stayed by Nichols’ side even as he developed dementia and began to lose his memory. When Nichols went missing in Ohio on April 8, 2010, so did Lady, and the police spent a week searching for the pair until they found the canine and her owner in a field. Nichols had died of heart failure, but Lady never left his side, staying alive by drinking water from a nearby creek. The loyal dog didn’t want to leave Nichols, but his family eventually took her away from the tragic scene and adopted Lady as their own.