10 top animal stories in NYC and on Long Island in 2013

Bear, a former shelter dog, rose to hero

Bear, a former shelter dog, rose to hero status after he alerted his new owner, Carol Swinson, to a fire in her Brentwood home in July. As the blaze erupted in her home in the middle of the night, Bear awoke Swinson by jumping on her bed and panting in her face. Swinson was able to escape with the dog and her 9-year-old grandson, D.J. There were no injuries in the fire. "This dog saved my life," Swinson said. (July 17, 2013) Read the story. (Credit: Chris Ware)

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From hero dogs to a subway shark to a woodchuck that kept getting stuck -- a la "Groundhog Day" -- these are 10 of the top local animal stories of 2013.

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