The two world wars are filled to the brim with countless military heroes. Brave men fought tooth and nail to attain peace. Through valor, courage, and pure, unadulterated patriotism, they managed to leave their permanent mark in the annals of time.
However, heroic humans are not the only ones who deserve recognition for their times at war. Often overlooked in the pages of recorded history, dogs also have a few unsung heroes among them. These canines proved their courage during their adventures in the no man’s land. Barking their way against all odds, prepare to be amazed by these 10 brave dogs in times of war.
Back in World War I, a Bull-Boston Terrier mix ended up in the encampment of a group of American soldiers in Connecticut at Camp Yale. The dog quickly became their friend and they ended up giving it the name “Stubby.”
Despite Stubby’s lack of military training, he quickly proved his efficiency to the soldiers in the camp. He would always bark to warn the soldiers whenever there was a German attack. At one point, Stubby even managed to capture a German spy by grabbing him by the pants. Stubby had also been in the trenches in Europe and participated in 17 battles during the course of his military career.
Aboard a British naval ship was a purebred English pointer named Judy. Back in 1942, the naval ship where Judy was boarded got bombarded by the Japanese. Being the good dog she was, Judy helped the soldiers that couldn’t swim.
Armed only with nothing but her loyalty, Judy carried the soldiers one by one to the safety of the shores of a deserted island somewhere in the South China Sea.
8. Jet of Iada
Trained as an “anti-sabotage” dog, the black German shepherd named Jet helped on the search-and-rescue operation for the victims of the air raids in the London Blitz back in World War II. For 11 hours, Jet managed to rescue 100 people in one day with the help of his team of dogs.
Jet was awarded the Dickin Medal for his helpfulness. However, his heroism didn’t end there. Back in 1947, Jet managed to save people from a building explosion in Liverpool. He received the RSPCA Medallion of Valor for this another outstanding deed.
Back in World War II, a Yorkshire terrier from New Guinea was adopted by an American soldier named Bill Wynne. He named this tiny dog Smoky and smuggled her to the Philippines. To everyone’s surprise, this unassuming baseball-sized dog became the key to complete a nearly impossible mission.
In order to communicate with one another, the soldiers needed to tunnel a Telephone wire underground. However, since the pipe was only around 20 cm wide, the plan was rendered impossible unless they dug a larger tunnel. Unfortunately, this alternate plan would expose them to the enemy attacks.
Luckily, Smoky was small enough to fit into the tunnel. Wynne tied the wire to her and placed all their fate to the unassuming dog. And to their surprise, Smoky managed to complete the otherwise impossible mission and saved 250 soldiers in the process.
Irma was a German shepherd that started out as a messenger dog who brought important letters between the posts whenever the phone lines got interrupted. Being naturally smart and skillful, Irma received a training to become a search-and-rescue dog during the London Blitz.
They trained Irma to bark differently if she sensed that someone they found was already dead. She became extremely skilled in determining the rescued person’s state that at one point, when the army doctors wrongfully pronounced a man they rescued dead, Irma barked to let the people know that the man was still alive.
Caesar was a World War II German shepherd that joined the army when a call for military dogs was conducted.
During an active duty, Rufus Mayo, Caesar’s handler, was sleeping beside him in a foxhole in an island in the Pacific. When Caesar sensed the Japanese soldiers nearby, he immediately switched into a defensive stance to protect his handler.
In a blink of an eye, Rufus caught sight of the grenade the enemies threw at him. Fortunately, he had just enough time to throw back the grenade. Caesar was shot three times during this encounter.
The surprise encounter immediately turned into a full-scale battle. Fortunately, Rufus managed to locate Caesar after the mayhem. The brave German shepherd took three weeks to recover from his injuries and later on, went back to his duties as a military dog.
Buster was a springer spaniel that did a fair share of bombs sniffing for British soldiers in Bosnia, Afghanistan, and Iraq. During his service, he managed to save thousands of lives with his efficiency in preventing catastrophic threats from happening.
Aside from bomb sniffing, Buster also did wonders to the morale of the soldiers. According to his handler Sergeant Will Barrow, soldiers often talked about their feelings and fears to Buster when they were not comfortable on doing it with other people.
During World War II, the soldiers at Australia’s Darwin Air Force Base found a six months old stray kelpie puppy with a broken leg. They managed to nurse it back to health and decided to keep him with them. They gave it the name Gunner, and for some time, the base became his home.
During the course of his stay, Gunner became familiar with the sound of the Japanese planes and what it meant for them. According to Listverse, Gunner was able to help the soldiers in the barracks with his sharp sense. Gunner’s sensitive ears were able to hear and distinguish the Japanese planes from a considerable distance that he could bark a warning to the soldiers 20-60 minutes before the enemies’ arrival.
Back in 2012, a US Marine Corps bomb-sniffing dog named Lucca was able to be a part of over 400 successful missions and save hundreds of lives in Afghanistan. Unfortunately, she lost one of her legs when a homemade bomb exploded close to her during her last mission.
Fortunately, Lucca was not alone during the tragic incident. Corporal Juan Rodriguez sprang into action and helped the poor dog immediately upon witnessing what happened. Rodriguez quickly made a makeshift tourniquet to cover up Lucca’s wound as he carried her somewhere safe.
Upon her recovery, Lucca finally retired from her service and received a Dickin Medal for her bravery.
In 2011, the Navy SEAL-trained Belgian Malinois Cairo was a member of a top secret mission in Iraq. His purpose is to detect bombs and enemy soldiers underground.
During the mission, Cairo worked hard in securing the perimeter of the compound they were in. And with the aid of newest technology, Cairo assisted the soldiers in accomplishing something that would be remembered in the history of the modern world – capturing Osama bin Laden.
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