From amazing puppy rescues to grumpy feral cats, the decade was filled with wonderful pet stories that will warm your heart. We had a hard time choosing our favorites, but here’s just a sampling of some of the sweetest pet tales of the 2010 to 2020.
1. The hero hiker carries an injured dog up a mountain
When Tia Vargas was hiking in the Grand Tetons, she came across a family who had encountered an injured English Springer Spaniel on the trail. Vargas lifted the puppy onto his shoulders and began to carry him to safety, even though he weighed 55 pounds. She reconnected with her dad, who was waiting for her a little later and credits her sense of humor and help from the angels with saving the dog.
“When I wanted to quit smoking was when I prayed. Prayer gave me strength. That and my dad’s jokes. He made me laugh and gave me energy. And feeling the angels lift the dog from my neck was what I needed to continue. “. Vargas found the dog’s family, but they were moving and couldn’t take him with them, so of course, she adopted him.
2. Police officer rescues shivering dog tied to fence
On a freezing day in January, a New York police officer noticed a dog chained to a fence in a city park. The officer jumped out of his patrol, wrapped the shaking dog in a towel, and rushed him to an area shelter. But when a couple of weeks passed and the abandoned dog still didn’t have a home, the officer stepped forward and made it official: he adopted the puppy he rescued and now “Joe” is part of the family.
3. Delivery driver rescues a blind and deaf puppy
As a UPS driver cruised his route in rural Missouri in the hectic weather just before Christmas, he thought he noticed something in the snow by the road. When the eagle-eyed Good Samaritan stopped to check, he found a deaf and blind little cub almost hidden in the snow. Now called Starla, the little dog was probably discarded due to her disabilities. In addition to having hearing and vision problems, she was riddled with worms and had a hernia. But now she’s warm and safe and plays in her foster home with a special needs rescue, all thanks to a guardian angel on a delivery truck.
4. The boy and his kitten are a perfect match
It hasn’t been easy for 7-year-old Madden, who was born with a cleft lip and two different colored eyes. He didn’t know anyone who looked like him until his mom found out about a very special kitten. Mom brought home Moon, who also has a cleft lip and two different colored irises, just like Madden. “We knew they were meant to be best friends,” Madden’s mom said. “Funny how a pet can make you feel less lonely.”
5. The dog will not leave the side of the trapped owner
During the nightmare of a highway emergency in Kentucky, more than 50 rescuers worked frantically to free people trapped in an overturned motor home. One of the passengers was a dog named Lucky who refused to leave while his owner was still trapped in the accident. As the emergency team worked to free him from the scene, the victim petted the puppy, which helped calm them both. Once the scene was cleared, a fire marshal and the cub walked down the road and took a break from the chaos. Lucky was reunited with his family later that day.
6. This grumpy ‘grandpa’ cat loves his foster kittens
Wild cats are not generally known for being cuddly and warm. They are mostly antisocial and prefer to be left alone. That’s exactly Mason, who was rescued from a large colony of feral cats and later adopted by Shelly Roche. But Mason went from being a grumpy old man to a caring caretaker when he was with the babies.
“When the red-haired Scrammy kitten started licking Mason’s ear, and Mason leaned into her, I completely melted,” Roche said. “The only thing Mason lacked had been contacted with another living being, and although he didn’t want it from ME, he had been yearning for it from his kind.”
7. Veteran meets his dog for the last time
After entering hospice care, veteran John Vincent had only one request: He wanted to spend a little time with his beloved dog. Because the 69-year-old Marine had no family in the area, he had to give up his Yorkie terrier mix named Patch to Albuquerque Animal Welfare. Knowing that Vincent was probably short on time, his hospice social worker approached the organization and volunteers rushed to bring Patch over for a visit. He spent the whole day curled up in bed, sharing kisses and hugs.
8. Cat Naps Inspire Shelter Donations
When Terry Lauerman, a retired teacher, decided to spend some of his free time volunteering at his local shelter in Green Bay, Wisconsin, he just wanted to brush cats. But a few hours of caring for kittens can sometimes be exhausting, so Lauerman would sometimes take a cat nap with some of his four-legged friends. His nap breaks went viral, leading him to encourage people to donate a few dollars for cats.
It worked. Within days, more than $ 20,000 had been delivered to the shelter on his behalf.
9. The puppy that fell from the sky
When construction workers in Austin, Texas, heard small screams, they thought a puppy was trapped somewhere in the rubble. But the screams came from above when they saw a Chihuahua puppy caught in the claws of a hawk. As the little one was flying overhead, he was suddenly dropped in their midst. Surprisingly, he had few injuries after his fall, and workers rushed him to a medical care facility where he received help for his injuries and then took him to a foster home. Your name? Tony Hawk, of course.
10. Community rallies to keep the man with his dog
When Mr. Williams was evicted from his home in the Atlanta area, he sadly entered the area animal shelter with his best friend, Lucky, by his side. He was able to find a hotel room, but he couldn’t take his dog with him. Lucky had to spend his first night in a shelter. A shelter worker posted about the duo’s plight, and the next day, Lucky had a temporary foster home while offers of food, clothing, jobs, and other resources arrived.
11. Shelter worker sleeps with dogs in a storm
When a storm was forecast for Nova Scotia, animal shelter employee Shanda Antle wasn’t about to go home. He knew the animals would trust the staff to be there for them, so he rolled out an inflatable bed and slept in a playroom with a dog named Hawking. They had the same taste in the movies and the 70-pound pup didn’t bog so he was the perfect bed companion.
12. The cat left during a hurricane and returns more than a decade later
When Perry Martin got a call that someone had found his cat, he was a bit confused. His cat T2 had disappeared during a hurricane in 2004 and had never been seen again. But Martin was optimistic and found that it was his long-lost kitty that had resurfaced. Thanks to a microchip and clever investigation by the vet’s office, they were reunited after 14 years.
13. The vet has breakfast with the shy shelter dog
When a severely emaciated and shy pit bull was too afraid to eat when humans were around, vet Andy Mathis devised a way to rebuild his confidence: He started by crawling up to his pen to share breakfast. The popularity of the video reminds us that a simple act of kindness can go a long way.