In 2004, eight-year-old Amber Mason was saved from the tsunami in Thailand when a young elephant carried her to safety. But this is less impressive when you realise that Amber was already riding the elephant on the beach when the wave struck.
Similarly, cats have accidentally saved their owners lives by meowing loudly when the house is on fire, but they were probably actually meowing to be let out themselves.
Nevertheless, genuine animal rescues do sometimes happen. In 2007, Scottish farmer Fiona Boyd was violently attacked by one of her cows who thought her calf was threatened. Her horse Kerry rode to the rescue and kicked at the cow to drive it off. And in 2005, lions saved a 12-year-old girl in Ethiopia by scaring away her kidnappers and then standing guard over her. It’s not clear whether they would have eaten her if the police hadn’t turned up though.