Dogs are truly man’s best friend. They are our loyal companions, comforts, and heroes. We’ve seen guard dogs, firefighter dogs, guide dogs, emotional support dogs, but this dog goes to the next level. Henry the eight-year-old Boston terrier saved his owners’ nine-month-old daughter’s life. Somehow, he sensed she was in danger and began to alert the parents.
Dog Alerts Parents About Their Sick Baby
Kelly Dowling from Connecticut explained that Henry kept entering the nursery where the baby was sick with a cold and waking her up. “He was head-butting the door open and going into her room and standing there,” she said in an interview with Good Morning America. “And every time I shooed him away, he would go back in as soon as my back was turned.” 
However, after this occurred multiple times, Kelly and her husband Jeff entered the nursery and realized their daughter was having trouble breathing. “She wasn’t clearing her airway,” said Kelly Dowling. “She started to turn blue and go rigid and she just really couldn’t she couldn’t get air, couldn’t get any oxygen.”
The Dowlings rushed the baby to the hospital where doctors were able to treat her. When the family returned home later that night, they made sure to give all the love to Henry. “We’re definitely spoiling the dog a little bit more,” said Jeff Dowling. “He was allowed to sleep in bed with me last night and he’s got a steak in his future.” Kelly added, “He’s never done anything quite so heroic before.” 
Read: Vet explains what pets do in their final moments just before they’re put down
The nine-month-old is recovering from her cold. In the meantime, Henry is enjoying the extra treats, cuddles, and wolf documentaries on National Geographic. In her now-viral Twitter thread, Kelly added another shoutout for the staff at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.
“Since this thread is still doing numbers I would like to shout out the ER department at @ctchildrens for being literal heroes. Not just for our LO but night after night, patient after patient. They go above and beyond in their care, and it shows.“
Dogs Can Smell Human Diseases
Henry is among many other heroic pets. In fact, researchers have discovered that dogs may detect certain diseases in their owners, including cancer, narcolepsy, migraines, and seizures. Their sense of smell is so advanced, they are able to notice odors humans cannot. The research is recent so there’s a lot more to learn about this ability and to potentially put it to better use. However, this kind of training is already in place.
For instance, some dogs learn how to help people with narcolepsy by potentially noticing an oncoming attack, allowing the owner to get into a safe place or position. Plus, these service dogs can help their owners with balance and mobility, as well as protect them in public or getting help. 
Read: Man Made His Wife Choose Between Her Rescue Dogs And Him – She Picked The Dogs
More Heroic Dogs Saving Their Owners
While studies in this area continue, there is a lot of anecdotal evidence. For instance, Sadie the six-year-old German shepherd saved her owner Bryan Myers during a stroke. The 59-year-old had recently recovered from Covid-19 when he collapsed. Sadie laid next to him and licked his face to keep him awake. Myers reached for her collar, and she began to pull him across the floor so he could get his cell phone and call for help.
In North Caroline, Lacresha Slappy fell into bed after a long night shift. However, she was quickly awoken by her dog, King, scratching her and pulling her hair. A fire had broken out in her home, and her dog managed to bring her to the door where firefighters rescued them.
In 2019, Barbara Dadswell was hiking in Washington State with her dog, Riley. However, toward the end of the trail, Dadswell fell into a ravine and broke her leg. She yelled for help and fashioned a makeshift splint for her leg and tried hobbling out of the woods for a day and a half. Finally, Riley’s barking attracted the attention of a passing hiker who called for help and saved her life.
While Henry, Sadie, King, and Riley’s stories had happy endings, Pickles’ did not. The five-pound dog protected his owners when a bear entered their home. Pickles barked and distracted the bear, leading it outside and away from the family. Everyone was safe, except for Pickles who died in the bear attack.  As Kelly Dowling said on Twitter, “We don’t deserve dogs.”
- “Hero dog credited with saving baby’s life.” Good Morning America. December 16, 2021
- “Hero dog credited with helping save baby girl’s life.” ABC News. December 16, 2021
- “6 Medical Conditions That Dogs Can Sniff Out.” Treehugger. Jaymi Heimbuch. March 24, 2021
- “21 Times Dogs Saved Their Owners Lives and Showed Why They Are Man’s Best Friend.” News Week. February 2, 2021