Some dogs accompany armies on the battlefield or life in the barracks.
While there are many companion dogs, there are also many utility breeds. The latter is suitable for carrying out specific work, such as rescue at sea or monitoring farms.
In a military setting, war dogs are also used. What does this name mean? What are the most popular varieties in this area?
The dog of war: definition
The war dog is not only invoked in the context of armed conflicts, as happened in historical times such as Antiquity or the First World War. It is above all a working dog in charge of the military field. Therefore, he is educated to carry out missions or respond to specific orders.
The physical and intellectual abilities of a war dog are used for various actions. It is applied especially to patrols, protection of an area or detection of explosives and mines. It can potentially be used to transmit intelligent messages.
Considered an exceptional guard dog, the Rottweiler is an animal with a very protective nature, a lively and independent spirit. From a strong and patient education, he learned quickly and was obedient. In the 20th century, he was called as a guardian dog to manage cattle herds. Then, we see him as a police dog and surveillance dog in some prisons.
We also appreciate his skills as a dog of war. He distinguished himself, among other things, with weapons feats during World War II. At that time, it was trained to destroy enemy armored tanks using mines.
The Alaskan Husky
The Alaskan Husky is an animal valued for its speed, strength and endurance. He is above all recognized as an excellent sled dog. Many teams consist of one or more specimens, especially for races in the natural environment at a distance of several kilometers.
This breed is primarily bred for utility. Hearing his master, he was also called a dog of war. If there are no famous historical facts about the Alaskan Husky, the latter has the qualities necessary for various missions in the field. For example, patrolling enemy territory or spying on barracks.
The German shepherd
The German Shepherd is the most iconic breed of war dog. No doubt this is due to the success of the Rintintin series where the animal is an army dog. In the course of the episodes, we have seen him accomplish many missions, such as rescuing or supporting soldiers in distress, monitoring enemy areas and even in rotation sequences.
The German Shepherd is distinguished by its intelligence, its ability to learn and adapt. In the army, he was given many missions, starting with the First World War. He can carry ammunition behind the front line, assist the stretcher-bearers or make rounds. It can be found in other major conflicts of the 20th century, such as the Second World War, the Korean War, the Indochina War or, more recently, in Afghanistan.
With a body and a behavior close to the German shepherd, the Malinois shepherd is as valued as a dog of war. It can be found for many dangerous missions such as border control or patrol. He is also a member of the Red Cross. In addition, he played a leading role as messengers in various conflicts. There is even mention of a telegraph dog!
He has extraordinary physical and intellectual abilities. It is common for members of the special forces (United States, United Kingdom, France, etc.) to have a Malinois guardian to accompany them in the most dangerous operations. Some animals are educated and parachute trained. It is also called during mine clearance or explosives detection missions.
With its mastiff appearance, the American Staffordshire is primarily cut for confrontation. Throughout history, it has faced many enemies: monkeys, rats, bulls and even bears. His role as a war dog has been somewhat eclipsed by his status as a fighting dog.
However, many army corps use it for spying on prisoners and barracks, as well as other missions. Although the origins remain unique to his feats of arms, one can evoke Stubby, the most decorated dog in the history of the United States military. Currently, the United States Army Corps no longer employs American Staffordshires in its ranks.