Fifty million people died in the Second World War, the biggest massacre in the history of humanity. But the animal kingdom also paid a heavy toll, despite no official numbers being compiled for the victims. This included combat animals, animals that backed up humans, those that entertained or consoled them, some that fed people, and other animals that were symbols.
On all fronts and on all continents, at all points of the compass, beasts accompanied mankind in this global conflict.
This full archive documentary - partly colorized - shows how dogs, horses, elephants and pigeons became WW2 soldiers’ best friends in battle.
Direction: Jean-Christophe Rosé
Production: Kuiv Productions for France Télévisions