The oldest example of domesticated dogs (ie living with humans) is from 14,000 years ago in Bonn-Oberkassel, Germany. Archaeologists discovered a grave that contained the remains of two humans and their dog!
In the UK we’re known as dog lovers. Our Kings and Queens loved them too. You’ll often spot them in portraits of royalty. King Charles II even had a type of spaniel named after him!
Winston Churchill – a very famous Prime Minister during World War II - was often compared to a British Bulldog because he was tough, determined and strong. He actually owned a black miniature poodle called Rufus.
Because of their intelligence and skills, dogs can be trained to sniff out humans, drugs, weapons and explosives. In World War II dogs worked in London finding survivors during the blitz. One dog, Irma had a special gift - if the person she found was alive she would bark for joy, if they were dead she would merely indicate to her handler where the body was.
The Dickin Medal (set up in 1943 by Maria Dickin founder of the PDSA People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals) is awarded to animals displaying incredible bravery during wartime.
In 2003 Buster, a Springer Spaniel, received the Dickin Medal for discovering a hidden cache of weapons explosives in Iraq, which probably saved the lives hundreds of people.