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Meet Bretagne, The Last Known 9/11 Service Dog That Worked At Ground Zero

Good dog.

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Denise Corliss, an electrical engineer from Texas, and then-2-year-old Bretagne, worked 12-hour shifts together at Ground Zero following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. They joined search and rescue team Texas Task Force 1 only a year earlier.

"The disaster dogs are essentially looking for people — survivors — in a disaster environment," Corliss told BuzzFeed. "The dogs have to be to climb over rubble and collapsed buildings and climb ladders."


Thirteen years later, Bretagne is no longer in the business of rushing into disasters. Instead, she works at a local elementary school as a dog children can read aloud to so they can practice their reading skills.

Corliss told BuzzFeed that it was believed that Bretagne was the last surviving dog that worked at Ground Zero.

"What we know is that Bretagne is believed to be the last responding dog from the FEMA system," Corliss said. "Of those dogs, she was the last survivor that responded to the trade center."

As Bretagne's story went viral last week, owners of other service dogs came forward on social media to share their stories. It also appears as though there may be a few other dogs who worked with Bretagne who are still alive and well that FEMA was not aware of.

Ryan Broderick is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Ryan Broderick at

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