Every year, the animal kingdom serves up a selection of stories that capture the world's imagination.

In 2012, people across the globe were charmed by Darwin the Ikea monkey, who escaped in the car park of the furniture store dressed in a shearling coat and nappy. A year earlier, tear-jerking images emerged of a faithful dog refusing to leave the side of his Navy Seal owner after he was killed in Afghanistan.

This year, mankind has revelled at all walks of life from nature, from testicle-eating fish to a man who lives with wolves. IBTimes UK looks at the top 12 animal stories of the year.