The year 2015 has been marked by some of the most emotional stories about our beloved animal friends.Some animals made headlines and their tragic fates moved the entire world.Others were a huge symbol of hope, despite their horrific ordeals, their survival stories restored our faith in humanity.And others will always stay in our memory simply because they melted our hearts and really made us laugh this year.So to round offthe year, we're paying tribute to the15 animals who've really left their mark on us this year:
1. Cecil, the magnificent lion who was tragically slaughtered by a trophy hunter.
Following the terror attacks in Paris in November, there were thousands of raids throughout and around Paris. And sadly, Diesel was one of the tragic victims during a special forces raid in Saint-Denis, Paris, on the 18th November. His death upset the whole world. International press and thousands of internet users paid tribute to the heroic 7 year-old Belgian Shepherd who died in action. Russia even donated a police puppy to France, as a symbol of solidarity.
3. Caitlyn, this gorgeous female Pitbull who survived the most horrific torture.
Last June, Caitlyn's story shocked the entire world. This adorable Pitbull managed to run away from home to escape her torturer. She had been suffering for 48 hours in silence, her mouth duct taped shut, before she was rescued. Taken in by a charity, Caitlyn managed to make a full recovery from her emotional and physical torment within a few months. People magazine officially recognised her bravery and determination by naming her their "Survivor of the Year".
4. Rose, the husky who travelled 500 km on foot alongside her Syrian refugee human.
The story of Rose and Aslan went viral when the United Nations published a video about them earlier this year.17 years old, this Syrian teenager left his country to escape from the war.Aslan had to leave all his possessions, but he refused to leave his best friend, Rose, a puppy Huskywho was only a few months old. Their friendship and this young man's astonishing maturity was extremely moving to see.
5. Bob, the Golden Retriever who is friends with 8 birds and a hamster.
Bob became an internet sensation earlier this year. Last July, some incredible photos of him surrounded by his best friends, eight birds and a hamster, were shared across the web. Bob, who lives inSão Paulo, Brazil, demonstrated just how kind and funny some pups really are!
6. Lana, "the saddest dog in the world", who got back on her feet.
This gorgeous 6-month-old pup moved the entire world in October. This poor dog got rejected by her new adopted family and taken back to the shelter after only a couple od days, and was absolutely heartbroken. This photo showing her with her head buried in the corner of her pen, completely miserable, went viral and gave her the nickname - "the saddest dog in the world". Thanks to this internet stardom, Lana managed to quickly find a new home. Whilst it may be temporary, at least Lana is no longer in the cold walls of the shelter. You can find out more about Lana's story here. 7. Komari, the miracle kitten who was raised by a family of ferrets.
It was one of the most adorable friendships we saw this year. Just five weeks old, Komari was found alone and starving in a cardboard box in Japan. In very bad health, the kitten was taken in by a family which already had six ferrets. What was truly miraculous, was that the ferrets welcomed the kitten in like one of their own. Soon, they all became inseparable and Komari even thinks she is a ferret now.
8. Athena, the dog who was buried alive but has by no means given up.
This poor dog was found near death, buried alive in the outskirts of Paris in August. She had even been tied down underground by a heavy bag of soil and a chain. This imaginable cruelty shocked the entire world, but thankfully she was saved at the last minute. Another dog on a walk sniffed her out and managed to avert his human about Athena. We can safely say that she's now very happy in her new home.
9. Goliath, the baby calf who was saved and now thinks she's a dog.
Goliath is another of this year's internet sensations. This adorable little calf was only a day old when he was taken in by an American family, who saved him from his horrible fate in a slaughterhouse. Goliath was so ill when he arrived at their home, that he had to be fed through a baby bottle. The three dogs who were already there took Goliath in and taught him all their doggy ways. Now Goliath is convinced he's a dog too!
10. Radamenes, the nurse-cat who looks after ill animals in a shelter.
This gorgeous little cat is the head nurse at an animal shelter in Poland. She was brought back to life by the vets who operated on her following a serious lung infections, and now all she wants to do is repay them by acting as a nurse herself. She now looks after all the other animals and has become a national symbol of luck in her country.
11. Kala and Keira, the best friends saved from death by a viral photo.
Kala and Keira were the epitome of being saved 'in the nick of time'. They were about to be euthanized in a clinic in the US when this photo of them hugging went viral. Thankfully, the photo moved so many people that they found a forever home and escaped their terrible fate. You can check out the happy duo here.
12. Bonsai, this Bulldog with two legs amputated who has so much love to give.
Born in April last year, this puppy Bulldog had a severe problem in his legs and spine, which meant that his two hind legs had to be amputated. But that wouldn't stop this little courageous pup! Heureusement Bonsai met some lovely people and his story touched so many internet users who wanted to donate to him so he could have surgery. And now he's happier than ever!
13. Budi, the baby orangutan who was rescued after life in a tiny cage.
Budi spent the first year of his life locked in chicken cage. Finally rescued, it took him a lot of time to recover from his traumatic first year of life. But now he is happy and healthy living at the International Animal Rescue centre, which regularly post photos of him on their website.