Ten Most Memorable Dogs Of 2011 – Plus One

Shelley Mamott, Staff Writer

There were a lot of great doggie awesomeness stories I came across in 2011. Whether they were historic, heroic, or heartwarming here are some that stood out to me as most memorable.

1. Roselle

The winner of the 2011 Hero Dog Awards in the Guide Dogs category, went to a Labrador Retriever named Roselle. Roselle led her owner, Michael Hingson, down 78 flights of stairs in the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. The honor was given to Roselle posthumously, as she passed away in June of this year.

2. Hawkeye

The picture that broke the nation’s heart – during Navy Seal Jon Tumilson’s funeral, his trusted canine friend Hawkeye guarded him one last time.

3. Daniel


The floppy eared Beagle known as Daniel the miracle dog, survived an Alabama gas chamber. On Wednesday, December 14th, Daniel’s Law, named after the Beagle was passed in Pennsylvania. The law will make it a crime for animals to be euthanized in a carbon monoxide gas chamber. Since surviving the experience, Daniel has been adopted by New Jersey dog trainer Joseph Dwyer, and has embarked on a trail of animal advocacy.

4.  Lily & Maddison

Lily, now six, was a puppy when she lost her eyesight due to an illness. It was after this traumatic event that her relationship with seven-year-old Maddison blossomed.  Maddison became Lily’s trusted guide dog and the two were inseparable. The pair were looking for a home together and were adopted by the Williams family in Crewe, Cheshire.

There has been an update on Lily and Maddison’s situation that has been brought to my attention. Despite the very best efforts of their new owners the two dogs were no longer happy living together and a decision has been made to rehome them separately. Maddison will stay at her new home and Lily is doing very well back at the rehoming centre. To read more dogstrustblog.

5. Military Dog Used In The Bin Laden Raid


Accompanying the Navy Seals who completed the bin Laden mission was a faithful four-legged soldier. Little is known about what may be the nation’s most courageous dog. The identity of the military super-dog will remain a secret. The trained dog, either a German Shepherd or a Belgian Malinois, was attached to a human Seal and lowered from a helicopter into the compound. Wearing canine armor, he went along to sniff out hidden explosives or, if necessary, find a secret room of bin Laden’s.

6. Hercules

A mere 6 hours after being adopted from a shelter, gentle giant Hercules, a Saint Bernard returned the favor to his new adoptive family by chasing away an intruder from their home.

7. Loukanikos

Loukanikos or Sausage, the riot dog, continues protesting in Greece. Allegedly present at nearly every major Greek riot since 2008. He is followed by photographers, earned fame on you tube videos and has a facebook page called ‘riot dog.’ In recent photos he is seen showing solidarity with hooded protestors.

8. Baks

This heart-warming animal odd couple shows that love truly is blind! A blind boxer named Baks got a whole new lease on life thanks to a goose named Buttons. The goose leads Baks around everywhere either by hanging onto him with her neck, or by honking to tell him which way to go.

9. Harper


Determined Pitbull puppy Harper beat the odds and learns to walk again. Discovered in a trash bag, and unable to walk, a regular at the animal shelter decided to take the puppy home for one full and final day of unabashed affection. Today Harper is not only alive — she’s thriving. The frisky puppy is gaining more and more mobility each day, to the astonishment of onlookers and medical professionals.

10. Ricochet


Ricochet, one of the eight finalists in the running for the American Hero Dog Awards, won the award for ‘Emerging Hero Dogs.’ Ricochet surfs with special needs kids and people with disabilities for therapeutic purposes. She has raised more than $100,000 for a number of human and animal causes and has helped inspire many people.

11. Patrick

Known all around the world as Patrick the Miracle dog, a Pit Bull that survived a near death experience and inspired movements nation wide. Found by a maintenance worker at the bottom of a garbage chute in Newark, New Jersey, Patrick was extremely malnourished and in such poor condition no one believed this dog would survive. After medical treatment and the doting attention of doctors and veterinary technicians, Patrick showed his determination to live and has continued to beat the odds.

by A Place To Love Dogs

44 thoughts on “Ten Most Memorable Dogs Of 2011 – Plus One

  1. Ed Lorenz says:

    Shelley, I’ve become acquainted (in a fashion) with most of these dogs, and I agree that they are all worthy of note. Placement is not important to the dogs; they are just God’s creatures doing God’s work in their own pawsome way.

  2. Sonja Martinez says:

    Beautiful. How anyone can say that pitfalls are dangerous dogs is beyond me. I love all animals. But I can’t have dogs bc of my two cat babies.

  3. sharon says:

    these dog are all amazing if you really want to help please do go to your local shelter and adopt a dog there are plenty of hero dog in there waiting for homes <3
    please Spay and neuter your pets:-)

  4. mary says:

    Hello, my name is Mary, and I want to have a good preso.aplacetolovedogs.com
    relationship with you, please I need your help, I am yours mary
    This is my email address (maryassane099@hotmail.com)

  5. sherlee mcgrath says:

    I remember all of them , they are all HEROS. They are all so special & beautiful, god bless them all<3…….especially my sweet christmas angel Patrick<3

  6. Ashleigh says:

    The two Danes that are on the list have been split up. The adopting family claimed the dogs didn’t get along any more… they put poor Lily up for adoption again and kept Madison. Sad sad story.

  7. Nancy says:

    I’m sad to see that you left out Mei-chan, the loyal tsunami dog who sat by her friend, Lei-chan. Mei-chan has now been located by Akiko at Nippon SPCA and is safe with her human. Sadly, Lei-chan, the white dog, was never located. These dogs were very famous and on CNN and on all major news outlets. They even have Facebook pages… “Dedicated to the mystery surrounding the two tsunami dogs” and “Loyal Tsunami Dogs, Cats and Animals of Japan”. I’d post their photos here if I could. I’ve followed their story from the very beginning and so has Global Animal. We at “Loyal Tsunami Dogs, Cats and Animals of Japan” have been trying to do our best to help the other animals who have been left in Fukushima’s exclusion zone. Rescuers are going and bringing out cats and dogs right now. I hope people will remember them and donate to help the animals. Thank you.

  8. Paula says:

    Dear A Place to Love Dogs, this is a wonderful story and reminder of all the great dogs on this earth. I am sorry to say, however, that Lily and Maddisen were separated shortly after their adoption. The new owners returned Lily saying that her and Maddisen had a “falling out”. The rescue allowed them to return Lily only and keep Maddisen. Many, many people were very upset about this but as far as I know, nothing has changed. Maybe you can do something abou this? Either way, great story and Patrick ROCKS!!

  9. Anonymous says:

    omg that is Patrick now? ~tears~ This photo has truly made my day!
    all these dongs are amazing in their own way but omg I just can’t believe how terrific Patrick looks! so so so happy for him!!!

  10. donna d says:

    Love the list!

    Leao was one of my favorites. He wouldn’t leave the grave of his owner, who died along with many others in a mudslide in Brazil in Jan. 2011. He was subsequently rescued and adopted by a new family.

  11. Chris says:

    There are so many more that should be on the list, (as in several that could be classified just with the likes of Patrick–Chamberlin, & Miracle for 2); That this list would be so extensive….All the dogs that participated in 911 S&R…most of whom are gone..one lost just this year;
    We could be reading for months, literally! Thanks for posting this list!

  12. Terri Moviel says:

    Ohioans are working together to try and bring Nitro’s Law into affect. It will make the charge of a misdemeanor offense to a Felony offense for the abuse of an Animal. So few people know about this new law we are trying to pass. Please check out the website Nitro’s Law! Just a little bit by everyone will mean a lot! Please help!

  13. Terri Moviel says:

    Please help Ohioans change the laws to make a misdemeanor charge changed to a Felony Charge for the abuse of an animal. Ohioans are behind the times with their animal abuse laws and animal abuse has to stop! Please go the the website Nitro’s Law for the details how you can help too! If everyone does a little it will mean a lot!

  14. Becky Deck says:

    Don’t forget Dozer, the goldendoodle who joined in a Maryland Marathon back in May and now has a page to raise money for University of Maryland’s Greenbaum Cancer Center.

  15. Samantha Withrow says:

    This is absolutely extraordinary! After seeing all these dogs and their stories they have indeed earned their places on the most memorable dogs of 2011! I found each to be touching and inspiring. I know that they are the best known across the country, but as many of you had said there are also many more that could be listed as well for their courage, strength, and endless loyalty, and love. After all isn’t that the true spirit of every dog?

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