Modern archaeology has a long history of colorful characters and serendipitous discoveries. Occasionally, the two go hand in hand. Or should I say, paw in paw, for some of the greatest and luckiest finds have resulted from chance discoveries made by the most unexpected participants—animals.
In this article I will discuss significant archaeological discoveries indirectly attributable to a goat, two dogs and a partridge. Although the finds to which these animals alerted humans have become famous, the incidental contributions of the nonhuman participants have often gone unrecognized.