On the 75th anniversary of VJ Day, which marks both the surrender of Japan and the end of the Second World War, leading vet charity, PDSA, paid their tribute to the brave hero animals ‘who also served’ and helped save countless lives during World War II.
The charity commemorated the milestone by sharing exclusive e-books which tell the remarkable stories of animal heroes honoured with the PDSA Dickin Medal**, known as the animals’ Victoria Cross. These include the incredible story of English Pointer Judy, who is the only dog to ever be listed as an official Prisoner of War in Japan, where she helped to maintain morale among her fellow prisoners and saved many lives through her intelligence and watchfulness.
The prestigious PDSA Dickin Medal recognises outstanding acts of gallantry and devotion to duty displayed by animals serving with the Armed Forces or Civil Defence units in theatres of war.
The Medal was instituted by the charity’s Founder, Maria Dickin, with the approval of the War Office and Imperial War Museum, to raise the status of animals and acknowledge the remarkable roles they play in society. It was first awarded to a messenger pigeon named Winkie on 3 December 1943.
PDSA’s Awards and Heritage Manager, Amy Dickin, said: “Throughout history, animals have made an extraordinary difference to the lives of so many, not only the men and women who serve, but also civilians who our military are protecting.
“Sharing the stories of these incredible animals this VJ Day is a great way to celebrate the incredible, life-saving role animals have played throughout history, and continue to play today.”