Working dogs deserve our utmost respect and admiration. They report for duty eager to please, and the tasks they so nobly perform improve the lives of humans or make the world a safer place—or both! With that in mind, we salute these 10 working dogs. They are simply amazing.
1. Sam the Victim Support Dog
This stray turned victim support dog for the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office in Phoenix, Ariz., works mostly on cases involving sexual abuse or family violence. He sits with victims and witnesses, some as young as 5 years old, throughout the interview, trial, and sentencing process. The comfort Sam provides helps them to tell their stories in an often-intimidating environment. Read more about Sam.
2. Belle the Searcher
If you are unlucky enough to get buried by an avalanche in Belle’s territory, she will try to find you. The Brighton Avalanche Rescue K-9 (B.A.R.K.) dogs stand ready to respond to accidents and rescue situations at Brighton Resort and in the surrounding backcountry areas of Utah’s Wasatch mountain range. Read more about Belle.
3. Kaspa the Dementia Dog
This specially trained service dog lives with dementia sufferer Ken Will and his wife Glenys. He performs daily tasks for Ken, such as fetching medicine when a reminder alarm goes off, and eases the stress of the situation for both. Kaspa will pull Ken out of a bad mood, and Glenys can feel comfortable leaving the two together alone, giving her a reprieve from her role as caregiver. Read more about Kaspa.
4. Bear the Police Officer
While trying to stop a fight between four women on a New York City subway platform, police dog Bear got kicked in the mouth. He held fast to the high-heeled foot, not letting go until a fellow officer got the woman in handcuffs. Her foot was fine, but Bear suffered two broken teeth and two chipped ones, as well as “scuff marks” on his snout. Read more about Bear
5. Dutchess the Therapy Dog
Well into her career as a therapy dog, Dutchess developed pigmentary uveitis, a painful condition that required the removal of her eyes. She didn’t let a lack of sight stop her important work. No, Dutchess continues to help autistic children and adults. She even has her own children’s book, with a portion of proceeds going toward non-profit groups that train therapy dogs and rescue animals. Read more about Dutchess.
6. Jazzi the Reading Tutor
Kids who struggle with reading often feel self-conscious about doing so aloud and in front of their classmates. Enter Jazzi. This adorable dog serves as a Tail-Waggin’ Tutor with help from her owner, Peggy Speck. Jazzi sits with a child and listens without judgment, patiently waiting as the student works through the words, sometimes with a little help from Speck. The pup even offers a high-five at the end of each reading session. Read more about Jazzi.
7. and 8. Storm and Chloe the Security Dogs
Simply put: These dogs work to bring about world peace. Storm and Chloe do so by serving as members of the K-9 unit that keeps the United Nations headquarters, in New York City, secure. Both learned how to sniff out explosives and suspicious materials before reporting for duty, and the dogs put their skills to use throughout the week with their handlers. Read more about Storm and Chloe.
9. Swatch the Greeter
Fans of “Project Runway” know this face well, as producers make it a priority to catch Swatch whenever the show films at the New York City fabric store. He sits at the door and greets customers, with more than a few coming in just to see the now-famous pup. Swatch also does charity work with Code Purple Event, which works to stop the spread of biting-insect diseases; the group raffles off a doggie date him as part of its fundraising efforts. Read more about Swatch.
10. Wilco the Service Dog
Wilco helps U.S. Army National Guard veteran David Moore, who was injured twice, first during a tour in Iraq and later while serving in Afghanistan. He was diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury, post traumatic stress disorder, and hearing loss in 2001. Wilco came into his life this summer thanks to K9s for Warriors, an organization that rescues shelter dogs and trains them to be service animals to veterans. Read more about Wilco.
These are just a few of the dogs with jobs Dogster has written about this year. Find more on our Dogs With Jobs page.