A brave dog risked his own life to protect an injured furry friend who had become stuck between the snow-covered rails of a live train line, with locomotives passing overhead every half hour, for two whole days (video below).
The video of the two Ukrainian pups, Lucy and Panda, was originally posted to Facebook by user Denis Malafeyev, who said he was part of the multi-person effort to rescue the animals. The post has since been viewed more than 4 million times and shared by more than 70,000 people.
"I got a phone call from a friend who said that there were two dogs lying on the railway track near Tseglovka village for two days," Malafeyev wrote, according to a translation printed by the Mirror.
Malafeyev said they tried to help the dogs off the tracks right away, but Panda was scared for his injured friend and was protecting her from the people trying to rescue them.
"When we arrived," Malafeyev explained, "it turned out that one of the dogs, the female, was injured and couldn't move, but the male dog was protecting her from us. I saw a train approaching -- and felt sick."
That was when Malafeyev and others assisting in rescuing the furry pair caught a magnificent moment of selfless loyalty on camera. As the train approached, Panda did the incredible.
"The male dog heard the sound of the approaching train, came close to the female dog and laid down next to her," Malafeyev said. "Both of them pushed their heads towards the ground, and let the train pass. The male dog was doing this for two days in a row."
"I don't know what to call this," he added. "Instinct, love, friendship, loyalty? One thing I know for sure, not all ... people would do the same as this."
Perhaps most people wouldn't stick it out like Panda, but Malafeyev wasn't giving up, either. With patience, dedication, and the help of the local animal shelter, Malafeyev and others were eventually able to calm Panda enough to free Lucy from the tracks and have her injuries treated. They were taken to the animal shelter together.
"Just to relieve the stress, the dogs are safe and sound," Malafayev clarified in a post a few days later. "They have had medical assistance."
The owner of the brave furry couple was eventually found and reunited with his beloved pups. Lucy did not suffer any fractures, only soft tissue damage, and both animals are "on the mend," according to ABC News.