Meet the Dog Helping Save Koalas and Other Wildlife From Australia Fires

Tom Hanks and Leonardo DiCaprio are some of the celebrities celebrating Bear the Dog's rescue work in Australia

By Cydney Contreras Jan 07, 2020 11:01 PMTags
Bear the DogInstagram

Meet Bear, the koala detection dog who is saving animals from the fires ravaging the Australian continent.

Since the fires began in September, this dog and countless other individuals have been doing their best to save their furry friends from the bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland. According to the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC), "Bear has helped us locate sick and injured koalas and has recently been called to search for koalas in habitats ravaged by fires."

As the fires continue to burn through the east coast of Australia, people are looking to Bear, who was abandoned as a puppy due to his OCD, for hope and comfort in what seems to be an otherwise bleak situation. 

His good deeds have even been highlighted by the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks. Both actors shared images of Bear at work, but Hanks went a step further by endorsing the creation of a Disney film all about Bear's adventures in the outback. "This is a Disney movie that must be made—the story of Bear, the koala detection dog," the critically-acclaimed star said. "That's adorable. I like Bear."

Stars Who Donated to the Australia Wildfire Relief Efforts

As tempting as starring in a movie is, Bear and his team are staying focused on the task at hand. Bear's cooperation is particularly necessary, according to USC Detection Dogs for Conservation Senior Research Fellow Dr. Celine Frere, since dogs can "smell what we can't see."

Watch: Brad Goreski Urges You to Donate to Australian Fire Relief Efforts

"A dog's sense of smell is 10,000 times stronger than that of humans. By successfully training Bear to locate koalas means that we can now work faster and with great accuracy to protect them," Wildlife Campaigner for IFAW, Joey Sharrad adds. "Now more than ever, every individual koala matters for the future of the species, so we are delighted that the world now sees Bear for what he is, a wildlife hero."

Bear is just one of the many beings that are contributing to the fight against the devastating wildfires. Liam HemsworthElton JohnNicole KidmanKeith Urban and many more celebrities have donated large sums of money to the cause in the hopes of preventing the spread of flames. 

If you would like to show your support, please choose from a charity of your choice or some of these official charities that can help: Red CrossFirefightersWires.