It’s not new to hear news stories of fine, upstanding individuals risking their lives to save an animal from danger. They are the brave ones who, in this seemingly darkening world, make us believe in hope and goodness.

Like this boy who saved a baby deer from drowning in a river in Bangladesh. The boy held the young fawn with one hand above his head, leading onlookers to wonder if the boy would appear again. The people are thankful to the boy for jumping into the river and rescuing the young deer- who’s now living happily with its family.

There’s also a famous photo of a man carrying a kangaroo out of the Bremer river in Brisbane.  The man said that his son asked him to save the kangaroo and that it’s in his nature–to lend a hand when he can, whether he’ll be saving a human or an animal.

And who can forget the boy from Parañaque who gave his dog a piggyback ride through the flooded streets? This heartwarming picture of an owner doing everything to save his pet in the middle of a typhoon took the internet by storm. See what I did there?

Plus, there’s the tale of two Norwegian guys rescuing a lamb from drowning in the sea. These two became internet heroes for helping the lamb out of rough waters.

People like these remind us that animals are more than just creatures we happen to share the earth with. They are unique beings that deserve our love, care, respect, and protection. Happy world animal day! Hug your furry (or scaly, or feathery) friend today!