Animal Heroes

Animal Heroes

By  Anthony Hill

A celebration of the forgotten heroes of war, the animals that have served alongside Australian forces.

In Darwin in 1942, Gunner’s barking alerted an entire army base of impending air raids, well before the enemy planes appeared on radar. Following an ambush, Sarbi the explosive detection dog was held captive by the Taliban for over a year, before heading home a hero. And when 135000 horses left Australia for the First World War, why was General Bridges’ charger Sandy the only one to return home?

Drawing from first-hand sources and interviews with those who were there, Anthony Hill brings to life the loyalty and courage of these animals, and the love their soldiers felt for them.

From the donkeys that carried the wounded at Gallipoli to the dolphins that hunted underwater mines in Iraq, these animal heroes are at the heart of some of the most remarkable stories in Australia’s military history.

This fully revised and updated edition features inspiring true stories of heroism and sacrifice, many of them never told before.

Format & Editions

Trade Paperback


April 3, 2017

Michael Joseph (AU Adult)

RRP $32.99

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April 3, 2017

Penguin eBooks (AU Adult)

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When my book Young Digger was launched at the Australian War Memorial, a friend, Norma Allen, suggested I should tell the story of ‘Horrie the Wog Dog’ – another wartime waif who was adopted as a mascot by his soldiers and smuggled back to Australia. ‘But that book has already been written,’ I said. ‘Horrie was destroyed by quarantine officials during the Second World War.’

‘I mean,’ Norma replied, ‘that you should tell what really hap­pened.’ And for the first time in nearly sixty years, she broke her silence and whispered Horrie’s secret. The true end to his tale as told to her by Horrie’s late master, Jim Moody. Even then, Norma said a silent sorry to those still in the know: for it was a deep secret, and the past can throw long shadows.

Also by Anthony Hill