BEST PET: Chewbaca lent a lifesaving hand -- solo

SANDUSKY James Gallagher III had a close call in 1998. He was up at 4 a.m., in his ba
susanmcmillan
May 24, 2010

SANDUSKY

James Gallagher III had a close call in 1998.

He was up at 4 a.m., in his bathroom. He had been drinking. And when he stood up too quickly, he got dizzy, lost his balance and fell over -- hitting the sink and bathtub on the way down.

When he woke up in the hospital three days later, he had a broken back and no memory of what happened. But he got some surprising news: His pug-terrier mix, Chewbaca, had saved his life.

"She's the best dog around," he said.

See Gallagher's and other people's essays celebrating their best pets ever and more: