The first recipients of the Dickin Medal in December 1943 were three pigeons serving with the Royal Air Force, all of whom contributed to the recovery of aircrew from ditched aircraft. The most recent to be honoured is Treo, a black Labrador, awarded for his 'heroic actions as an arms and explosives search dog in Afghanistan'. These true tales of heartrending devotion and duty are told from first hand accounts and from the citations themselves. There's Rip the terrier who is credited with saving upwards of 100 lives sniffing out survivors buried after bombing raids in WWII. Judy the pointer, hero of a Japanese Prisoner of War Camp. Simon the ship's cat who, though injured, continued to stay with his crew under fire. G.I. Joe the pigeon who saved the inhabitants of a village in Italy when she flew twenty miles in twenty minutes with a message to evacuate prior to a bombing raid. There's Buster, a spaniel who located an arms cache in Afghanistan saving the lives of countless soldiers.
Written in a spirit of celebration, and intended to provide a lasting memorial to these remarkable animals and the men and women who came to rely on them, these tales of courage and devotion will stay with the reader long after they have closed the book.