2011 Valor Dog of the Year

The Humane Society of the United States named Yogi, a golden retriever, the 2011 Valor Dog of the Year for saving his owner's life after a bicycle accident. Paul Horton of Austin, Texas, went over the handlebars on his mountain bike and landed on his head.
Horton was knocked unconscious. When he woke up, he couldn't move and was bleeding from the nose and mouth. Yogi was at his side.

For the next 45 minutes, Horton pleaded with the 85-pound dog to go home and get help. Yogi didn't want to leave. Horton couldn't yell, and he was out of sight of passers-by, about 100 feet from a dead-end street.

Finally, Yogi headed back to the main road, where Horton's neighbors Bruce and Maggie Tate were walking. The normally mellow dog barked frantically. The Tates knew something was wrong and followed Yogi to Horton. There, Yogi stood protectively by his friend.

"It's pretty amazing that Yogi first stayed with Paul when he needed to, then recognized us and came to get us," Bruce Tate said. "Paul was in desperate shape. He wasn't in a place where there's a lot of traffic."

Doctors found that Horton's vertebrae had pinched his spinal cord, leaving him paralyzed from the chest down. They credit Yogi with saving Horton's life. Horton has since regained some sensation, and has limited use of his arms. And Yogi is still his best friend. Link -via Arbroath

(Image credit: Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman)

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