In the days following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, thousands of people arrived at Ground Zero to aid in the rescue and recovery efforts. With them were hundreds of heroic dogs trained in a variety of capacities.
A temporary exhibit honoring these courageous canines has been erected at the 9/11 Memorial & Museum and will be on display through fall of 2019. The “Dogs of 9/11” art installation features several different forms, including a statue from the American Kennel Club’s DOGNY initiative.
“The genuine and broad appeal of this story of canine courage and dedication alongside their human handlers compelled us to write this story,” Kate Monaghan Connolly, Senior Communications Director of the museum, tells AKC. “Also, our visitors have let us know that they would love to hear more about this story of dogs and the aid they provided, and we were responsive to that feedback.”
The dogs on the ground following the attack served as search and rescue dogs, cadaver dogs, and therapy dogs, assisting and comforting first responders and rescue and recovery workers.
“After 9/11, New York City received an overwhelming response from people around the world, and the city also received incredible support from these dedicated canines,” Monaghan Connolly explains. “We hope that in addition to remembering the sacrifice made by so many, people will also remember that dogs helped alongside humans in the response and made a valuable contribution.”
You can find the “Dogs of 9/11” exhibition outside the Education Center in the museum. We encourage you to learn more about these dogs, some of whom put their lives on the line while digging through smoldering debris. Their actions helped bring healing to a country in mourning, and we will forever be grateful for their service.