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Military Dogs: Some Famous Four-Legged Heroes

Posted by Hot Dog Collars on 11/22/16 2:24 PM

As much as it may seem overused, the expression “dog is man’s best friend” rings none truer than with military service dogs. Trained to ignore their very nature, military dogs are taught more than the typical sit, beg and roll-over commands. They must learn to suppress barks and snarls, to sniff out danger, and to rely completely on their handlers. In your search for pet tags, take some time to learn more about our heroic military dogs, they may just inspire you!

Name: Sergeant Stubby

Breed: Boston Bull Terrier

War: WWI

Story: sgt stubby the dogDuring combat training on the lawns of Yale University, Private J. Robert Conroy happened upon a small puppy with a stub for a tail. Picking him up and enfolding the pup in his arms, Private Conroy named the brindle creature Stubby, and made the pooch the official mascot of the 102 nd Infantry, 26th Yankee Division. Stubby went under drill training and was taught how to salute high-ranking officers. Not wanting to be separated from the little dog, Private Conroy snuck Stubby onto SS Minnesota when he and the 102 nd Infantry shipped out for France.

After being found out by the Commanding Officer, Private Conroy was saved from discipline thanks to the respectful salute Stubby gave the CO. As the 102 nd Infantry marched to the front lines Stubby marched alongside them. Stubby suffered a mustard gas injury, and after he fully recovered from his war wounds, he became a mustard gas expert, alerting his comrades-in-arms of any threat of exposure, but that wasn’t all. On high-alert, Stubby crossed paths with a German soldier who was mapping out the Allies’ position. Stubby attacked the German soldier, and did not release the enemy from his jaws until the Allies were able to recover the soldier and Stubby. For capturing an enemy, Stubby was promoted to Sergeant.

Name: Smoky

Breed: Yorkshire Terrier

War: WWII

Story: smoky the dogFound hungry and cold in a foxhole in New Guinea, Smoky the Yorkshire Terrier was saved by an American soldier and later purchased by Corporal Bill Wynne. Being a small dog, Smoky fit easily into solider knapsacks, and with them she traversed the New Guinea jungle. Smoky, thought to be one of the first-ever therapy dogs, visited and brought comfort to injured soldiers, boosting morale and raising hope.

A smart and loyal dog, Cpl. Wynne trained Smoky to help in the Allies’ war effort. Smoky is most known for the military assignment that had her string 70-feet-long communication wires underground through a network of pipes. Thanks to Smoky’s efforts, the Allies were able to communicate with their base uninterrupted by the enemy.

Name: Kaiser

Breed: German Shepard

War: Vietnam

Story: kaiser the dogKaiser’s story starts in 1965 in Fort Benning, Georgia, where he met his handler, Marine Lance Corporal Alfredo Salazar. Salazar has said that Kaiser introduced himself to his new partner by licking his hand, “and from then on we were a team.” After training for some months, Salazar and Kaiser were sent to the Republic of Vietnam, where they were involved in some dozen major military operations and participated in over 30 combat parts.

After joining “D” Company, First Marines, 3rd. Marine Division for a search and destroy mission, Salazar and Kaiser were ambushed and hit by enemy fire. Salazar survived the attack, but Kaiser was mortally wounded. In one last act of affection, Kaiser went to lick Salazar’s hand, and then died. Kaiser was the first Marine Scout Dog to be killed in action in the Republic of Vietnam, and as tribute to his bravery, the Marines named their camp “Camp Kaiser,” in the loving memory of their favorite German Shepard.

Name: Toby L024

Breed: Black Labrador Retriever

War: Afghanistan

Story: toby the dogToby received expert training as a Specialized Search Dog and traveled to Afghanistan with his partner, Army Specialist Thomas J. Jackson, for an 11-month deployment in the worst part of the country. Toby was one of the lead dogs who with his human partner led regular combat patrol missions looking for Taliban insurgents and bombs. Toby regularly saved the lives of his combat patrol by sniffing out RPG caches and explosives. He even once found a 250-pound guided bomb that had failed to explode.

Toby was most appreciated for his determination to not let any of his comrades walk into danger. In the middle of a raid on a Taliban house, Toby entered the house first, as was his job. But instead of letting his team enter after him, Toby sat down at the front door, not letting anyone enter the building, even his handler. The patrol called the bomb squad and learned that the house had been wired to explode at their entrance, Toby saved all of their lives that day.

In honor of these heroic pups, give your dog a tighter hug, and maybe an extra scoop of kibble at dinner. You might get them new pet tags too, just to show your appreciation. For a great selection on doggie accessories, visit Hot Dog Collars today. 

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