1. These firefighters who saved a litter of wolf cubs from a wild forest fire.
A wild forest fire the size of Manhattan erupted along the southern coast of Alaska, and while hundreds of firefighters battled the blaze, this fire crew managed to do double duty and save a litter of helpless little wolf cubs.
2. These divers who helped a manta ray by cutting away the fishing line it was tangled in.
While diving in the Philippines, these divers came across an injured manta ray entangled in fishing line. The guide of the diving team approached the manta ray slowly, getting at the line and finally setting it free. This beautiful, graceful creature then hung around for a bit as if in gratitude.
3. This man who ripped a hole in his truck to rescue a teeny kitty.
After hearing consistent meows while fishing, Errand Frazier decided to investigate the source of the sounds. Realizing they were coming from inside his truck he ripped a small hole to find a baby kitten staring back at him. Unable to extract her himself, he then sought the Humane Society’s help to get her out safe and sound.
4. These kids who brought home a lonely stray and stayed by his side in his last moments.
Found as a stray, this melancholic pup was taken to the vet by the boys only to get some distressing news. He wasn’t going to make it. Instead of having the vet put him down, they took him home so that he could be surrounded by love, comfort, and warmth in his last moments on Earth. Just… let those feelings flow.
5. These students who built this adorable cockapoo a wheelchair.
Jimmy the cockapoo had to have his leg amputated when he was just 4 months old, after his previous owner yanked at his leg and left him with a dislocated elbow and an untreated broken leg. However, a group of thoughtful high school students got together to build him a wheelchair that catered to his exact, unique needs.
6. These snorkelers who freed a humpback whale entangled in fishing nets.
Michael Fishbach (co-founder of the Great Whale Conservancy) and a couple of his friends were enjoying the waters of the sea of Cortez when they came across this whale, severely entangled in local fishing nets. After several hours of cutting and untangling they managed to free the whale, which showed its gratitude by doing spectacular flips and breeches.
7. These rescuers who helped Frostie the Snow Goat get back on his feet.
When Frostie was rescued, he had a long list of ailments, including a joint condition that rendered his hind legs immobile. With the support of some wonderful rescuers and a wheelchair, Frostie is going to get his happily ever after! Anyone’s heart melt in a puddle yet?
8. These cops who rescued a dog that had been trapped in mud for three days.
Pluto had been missing for three days when the cops found him with his head sticking out of a muddy embankment. He was so close to death he couldn’t move a muscle. These mushy-hearted cops gently pulled him out of the mud with soothing words and helped save Pluto’s life.
9. This zookeeper who has dedicated his life to protecting lions.
Kevin Richardson is a South African zookeeper, also known as “The Lion Whisperer” because of the amazing connection he shares with these wild, majestic beasts. He has spent most of his adult life living with, caring for, and protecting them from hunters and poachers.
10. This man who saved an unborn fawn with some quick thinking and a pocket knife.
Bill Schulte saw a car hit a deer and drive away. When he stopped to help the injured deer, he found that it had died. He also found that the deer was pregnant! Using his pocket knife he cut open the deer and saved the fawn! Huzzah!
11. This wonderful lady who tenderly sang this baby elephant to sleep with a lullaby.
Sangduen “Lek” Chailert is the founder of the Elephant Nature Park in Thailand. She is lovingly known as “The Elephant Whisperer” because of her long history with rescuing mistreated chang (Thai word for elephant). Her love for these gentle giants is made apparent in this touching video in which she is seen lulling a baby elephant to sleep.
12. This brave army veteran who put his life on the line to save a beagle hit by a car on a busy highway.
While driving on Interstate 470 East in Missouri, Aaron Schneider saw a dog get hit by a car that didn’t stop. Instead of driving away he stopped and crossed three lanes on foot to tend to the dog. Not only that, he also waited three hours for Animal Control to arrive. Schneider plans on adopting the beagle once it has recovered from its injuries.
13. This man who has driven more than a million miles to save the lives of 2,000 dogs.
For nearly a decade, Greg Maley has been on and off the road rescuing unwanted dogs and connecting them with loving families. He doesn’t just rescue them, he loves, comforts, and keeps them clean and happy before they meet their new families. Hats off to this awesome human.
14. This generous volunteer who went way out of his way to reunite a goat and a donkey.
Mr. G the goat was rescued from an animal hoarder and in the process got separated from his donkey BFF Jellybean. When he arrived at his new home, Mr. G refused to eat anything and instead spent all his time in a corner, depressed. Jeff McCracken volunteered to drive 14 hours round trip to help reunite Mr. G and Jellybean in the process restoring Mr. G to his sprightly self.
15. This kind man who saved a kitten that got tossed out a car window.
Robert Ramberger was on his way back from the dentist when he saw someone throw two kittens out of a moving car on the highway. Ramberger immediately pulled over and tried to rescue the animals, managing to save this little guy named Rambo.
16. This diver who helped an injured dolphin.
Keller Laros was on a night dive in Hawaii when he was approached by the injured dolphin. The dolphin had a fishing line wrapped around its fin and a hook embedded into its body. Laros was able to cut the dolphin free with a pair of scissors. What’s most compelling is that it seems that the dolphin knew exactly what Laros was doing and seems to ease into it.
17. These farmers who rescued a sheep that was buried under snow.
Thousands of sheep were trapped after an unlikely early snow storm in Iceland. Farmers set to work trying to save as many as they could.
18. This family who took in two tiger cubs.
Animal expert and zookeeper Giles Clark and his family added two Sumatran tiger cubs to their household after the cubs were born in an Australian zoo in Queensland. Sumatran tigers are an endangered species and less than a third of them make it to adulthood. For the cubs to survive they needed around-the-clock care, which the Clark family generously offered to provide.
19. This reporter who helped save a bunch of ducklings that had fallen into a storm drain.
He was reporting a story when he heard the mother duck quacking right outside the drain where the ducklings had fallen in. When the TV reporter realized that it looked like no one else was going to save them he decided to do it himself. Using a tote bag, he scooped the little ducklings and delivered them to safety.
20. This vet who built this baby pig hind-wheels out of toy parts.
Len Lucero got the pig when a woman brought him to his clinic to be put down. Instead, Lucero offered to adopt him and came up with this creative solution using parts from his son’s toys. He named the pig Chris P. Bacon.
21. This sweet man who saved a tiny kitten from drowning.
Mieno Yusuke didn’t flinch when he saw a kitten struggling in the canal. Instead he used his umbrella to help the kitten get out of the water.
22. This wonderful man who waded into a lake every evening and gently rocked his arthritic dog to sleep.
John Unger adopted Schoep as an 8-month-old pup. While it took time for Schoep to trust Unger due to abuse from his former owner, they managed to form a connection so strong that Unger credits Schoep as his savior from depression after a bad breakup.