Seven little-known dogs that have left their mark on history

Peritas, 3rd century BC J.-C.

Peritas was Alexander the Great’s dog. The story goes that this ultra-powerful dog would have torn a lion to pieces and knocked down an elephant. As for his faithful horse Bucephalus, Alexander the Great had a city built in his dog’s honor: present-day Jhelum, in northern India.

Lily, 1589

In Saint-Cloud, the monk Jacques Clément, claiming to be the bearer of news from the Louvre, asks to see King Henri III. The latter’s bichon, Liline, which he carried as usual in a basket hanging from his neck, warns him and growls at this stranger approaching his master. But Henry III ignores his dog… and gets stabbed in the stomach. He will die of his wounds at night.

Henrietta of England Hound, 1670

During the Renaissance, “tasting” dogs were routinely used to avert the death of their masters, tasting their brews to ensure they contained no poison. In June, Henrietta of England, cousin of Louis XIV, felt ill after drinking a cup of chicory. When her husband suggested that she drink the drink for her dog, she refused out of love for her companion. She dies a few hours later.

Laika, 1957

On November 3, the dog Laika was the first living creature sent by the USSR into space aboard a Russian satellite, Sputnik II. A journey to the stars without return: Laïka died after only a few hours of flight due to stress and a violent rise in temperature.

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