NHL players honor furry friends on National Dog Day

National Dog Day is upon us and man's best friend is no stranger to many an NHL player.

Now, considering we're mired in the dog days of summer, perhaps it's best to toss a bone to some of the league's most loyal and furry creatures.

St. Louis Blues captain and noted dog lover David Backes couldn't be happier in this family photo.

Teammate Alex Pietrangelo believes two is better than one

... as does Anaheim Ducks center Andrew Cogliano.

Edmonton Oilers forward Nail Yakupov certainly enjoys time with his puppy.

Columbus Blue Jackets superstar Ryan Johansen and fellow teammate Cam Atkinson are all smiles with their dogs.

Former New Jersey Devils defenseman Ken Daneyko saw his friends get a bit physical.

New Pittsburgh Penguin Nick Bonino's dog Kali enjoyed wearing the team colors last month.

And lest we forget, a couple of NHL mascots showed their appreciation as well.

(h/t Sportsnet)