“SEAL dogs have one mission in life and that is to assault targets with the team.” – Brandon Tyler Webb, former SEAL
I read an amazing article (source) which put the spotlight on some of the heroes who helped catch Osama bin Laden: Navy SEAL dogs. They have razor sharp teeth made from titanium, their body armor can defend against shrapnel and they’re trained to wear oxygen masks for sky diving into enemy territory.
Alex Dunbar, a former Marine who trains U.S. Military dogs at his Close Quarter Battle K9 School in Colorado states:
“They are trained in special building searches and working with night-vision cameras. They are able to differentiate between a hostage and a terrorist. They are trained to helo-cast from a moving helicopter into water. They can work in multiple teams and take down multiple targets.”
The dogs were strapped to the chests of the SEAL Team Six members as they dropped into the battle zone from one of the three Blackhawk helicopters landing in Abbottabad, Pakistan. The dogs were equipped with an infrared camera to stream live images to SEALs in various locations. Radios were mounted near their ears to allow SEALs in other parts of the compound to give orders.
The Team Six Pooch was trained to be ultimate soldiers…just like their masters, states Dunbar. They can sniff out explosives, find people hiding in buildings and attack any non-SEAL person holding a weapon.
The titanium teeth I mentioned above cost around $2,000 per tooth and can pierce an enemy’s body armor.
“It’s just devastating what these tooth do when they get into someone,” Dunbar said. It’s like being stabbed four times at once with a bone crusher.” Ouch!
Apparently all branches of the military employ “working dogs” trained for combat operations. These dogs receive training at the Lackland Air Force Base in Texas before being deployed worldwide.
What kind of dogs are these, you might wonder?
Gerry Proctor, the base spokesman, the most common type of dog utilized by the U.S. military to detect explosives is the Labrador, while the best patrollers are Belgian Malinois dogs. But, if you’re wondering the name of the Bin Laden hunting dogs, you’re out of luck. Proctor says the dogs are part of the team, and as such, have protected identities.
What happens to these dogs after their duties? They are generally put up for adoption.
“All these dogs are socialized and go back and play with their family after the mission,” says Dunbar. “They are truly super dogs.”
What do our readers think about the dogs serving in the military? We look forward to hearing your thoughts!
Hugs and Pooches!