I was not the only one who found comfort in an animal on September 11th, but many stranded in the ruble of Ground Zero were rescued by canines and I can only imagine the comfort these faithful dogs gave to victims and rescue crew alike. These four legged heroes walked across burning metal, hot concrete, through smoke, fire and ash to find survivors. The dog heroes of 9/11 often went places humans were physically not capable of going, and assisted in the search, recovery and rescue of many victims. Of course, you cannot pay tribute to any canine hero with out remembering the handlers who helped train and guide these dogs in their rescue missions.
For days dogs searched for survivors. Many of the canine heroes could not begin searching until after 9/11, because all flights had been grounded, and those called to serve were unable to make it to Ground Zero, but the work in the days following was still equally as strenuous, if not more so. These dogs stepped up to the challenge, and displayed their dedication to their handlers, to the human race, and to helping. They courageously put their lives on the line in a way most dogs would never be able to do, and assisted our nation.
A few years ago I checked out a book from the library that has become one of my favorites. Dog Heroes of September 11th: A Tribute to America’s Search and Rescue Dogs, is an incredible book filled with photos of rescue dogs, the stories of the grueling training that went into making them capable to assist on September 11th, the pain the dogs faced as they were unable to locate survivors, and the comfort the dogs gave firefighters and rescue crew on site after the terrorist attacks. This is a must read for any dog lover, and a wonderful tribute to many of the dogs that served our nation.
Many of the dogs that took part in the rescue missions are now elderly canines, and some have since crossed the