LIVING
02/12/2019 10:47 EST | Updated 02/13/2019 13:34 EST

History’s Most Heroic Dogs

While most of us think of our pups as the quintessential family pet, the reality is we've long relied on dogs to do some pretty important work. For centuries, they've been utilized for protection and hunting, and today, they still perform some of those same essential tasks.

In partnership with parasitepolice.ca — a great resource for canine health — here are some of the top dog jobs that we're grateful for.

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Police K-9 dogs

Thanks to their superior sense of scent, dogs have long been used to track fugitives, explosives and missing people. Cloud II, one of Canada's most famous police dogs, is credited with sniffing out 123 fugitives and countless missing people. After the 9/11 attacks in New York City, hundreds of dogs were used to locate survivors in the rubble. Sadly, many lost their lives in the process.

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Guide dogs

Few canine jobs are more heroic than guide dogs. But it wasn't until the 1920s that that the guide dog movement took off, thanks to a wealthy American named Dorothy Harrison Eustis who began spreading the word about how effective dogs could be in helping the blind. Schools were soon set up in the United States and across Europe. Today, guide dogs still provide an essential service for people who are visually impaired, allowing them to have independence and richer lives.

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Service dogs

From people with stability issues, to veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, service dogs make for healing companions. In the last few years, dogs have also been used to help children with autism. Some dogs are even trained to interrupt self-harming behaviour and to help de-escalate meltdowns.

Performing high-pressure work like this requires healthy and happy pups. One way to ensure that working canines can perform their duties is to protect all dogs from internal and external parasites — through regular vet check-ups and preventative products.

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Acting dogs

Some film buffs say the first dog to appear in a motion picture was a pooch named Rover, starring in the 1905 British film called Rescued by Rover. Since then, dogs have been a staple in the business. The only question now is who has the best acting chops? Is it Toto in "The Wizard of Oz", or Marley from "Marley and Me"? Back in Frasier's heyday, Entertainment Weekly ranked Eddie, (or Moose, his real name), as television's top dog.

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Herding dogs

While they're not as common as they once were, many farmers still rely on herding dogs to round up animals. Some breeds will nip at the heels of a sheep or a goat to get them moving. Border collies stare them down. Others simply jump on the backs of the animals to move them along.

Whether your pup is a disciplined worker or just a playful companion, keeping them healthy is a must. Protect your dog from the dangers of internal and external parasites by visiting parasitepolice.ca.