Skip to main content

Photos: Pioneering Animals in Space

Laika

Laika

(Image credit: NASA)

Laika, a mixed-breed dog, was the first living being in orbit. She was launched on the Soviet Union's Sputnik 2 mission in November 1957.

Sam the Monkey Astronaut

Sam the Monkey Astronaut Sam the Monkey Astronaut

(Image credit: NASA)

A rhesus monkey named Sam is shown after his flight of Dec. 4, 1959, which tested the launch-escape system of NASA's Mercury spacecraft.

Miss Sam the Monkey Readies for Flight

Miss Sam the Monkey Readies for Flight

(Image credit: NASA)

The rhesus monkey Miss Sam is placed in a container for a January 1960 flight that tested the launch-escape system of NASA's Mercury capsule.

Ham the Space Chimp

Ham the Space Chimp

(Image credit: NASA)

Ham the chimpanzee after his successful suborbital spaceflight of Jan. 31, 1961.

The Legacy of Space Chimps

The Legacy of Space Chimps

(Image credit: NASA)

The real-life Ham is led down the steps from a trailer.

Enos the Chimp Before His Orbital Flight

Enos the Chimp Before His Orbital Flight

(Image credit: NASA)

Enos the chimpanzee being readied for his orbital spaceflight of Nov. 29, 1961.

Iran Space Monkey 1

Iran Space Monkey 1

(Image credit: Iran State TV/Powered by NewsLook)

Iranian space officials announced Monday (Jan. 28, 2013) that they have successfully launched a live monkey into space.

Iran's Space-Traveling Monkey #2

Iran Space monkey

(Image credit: Iran State TV/Powered by NewsLook)

Iranian space officials announced Monday (Jan. 28, 2013) that they have successfully launched a live monkey into space.

Space.com Staff
Space.com is the premier source of space exploration, innovation and astronomy news, chronicling (and celebrating) humanity's ongoing expansion across the final frontier. We transport our visitors across the solar system and beyond through accessible, comprehensive coverage of the latest news and discoveries. For us, exploring space is as much about the journey as it is the destination.