In a heartbreaking show of love and loyalty, a dog stayed by the body of his sister who died by the side of a road in Texas, US.
Kingsville Kleberg Health Department Animal Control and Care Centre shared a Facebook post describing a call they received about a dead dog lying in the road.
When they arrived at the site, they spotted another dog sat next to the deceased pooch with one protective paw resting on her body.
Believed to be a catahoula mix aged between six and 12 months, workers at the care centre decided to name the dog Guardian because of his protective actions.
“This kid wouldn’t let anyone mess with his sister,” says the post, adding that it was not easy for team members to convince the dog that they were there to help.
Finally they were able to persuade him to come with them to the shelter.
With love and care, they prepared Guardian for adoption and on May 29 he found a new “forever home” after being featured on the centre’s Facebook page.
Social media users were touched by the post.
One commented: “So heartbreaking. Glad guardian has a home. RIP to his sister.”
“Animals have bigger hearts than most humans. Thank you for saving this sweet, smart dog,” said another.
Animals experience similar sensations of loss to humans when they lose their owners, friends or family, scientists have found.
A loyal dog recently made headlines after he waited patiently inside a hospital in Wuhan, China for three months after his owner died of coronavirus.
Unaware that his owner would not be returning, Xiao Bao, aged seven, waited in the lobby of Taikang Hospital for more than three months, during which time he was fed by staff.
He has now been re-homed after winning the hearts of hundreds.
There have been countless other tragic stories of dogs waiting on their owners’ graves for months or even years after they have died.