Thousands of dogs are killed in military combat. Even more of these highly trained, noble animals are permanently injured while in war. There are endless stories of rescues and other heroic accounts that were performed by dogs. A single military K9 alone, saved 1,000 lives of military soldiers in military combat. We honor the dogs for the service, but are these large sacrifices resulting in proper care after the fact of combat?
These military dogs can most definitely be essential to combat in war. They carry heightened senses that men and women in the military do not obtain. The dogs can detect bombs, track humans, and sniff out dangerous items that are wanted or needed to be found. This benefits our country’s military greatly, but at what cost of these dogs? Some view them as just animals for work, but others view them as the next closest living creatures to human beings.
Having military dogs in combat has become an extremely controversial issue. Yes, having these dogs can be greatly positive for those who believe animals are an essential asset to combat. The fact that it is better to allow dogs to sacrifice and lose their lives over the men and women who are also fighting in combat. A human life is more valuable than an animal’s life.
On the contrary, there are many who argue that because the risk of combat and war is the same, no matter who is serving, some believe a military dog and soldier’s life is as a matter of fact, equal.
Either way you as a reader may view this, providing protection for these military dogs is very strongly being pushed. Bullet/stab proof vests originally started for police dogs, but can become an option for the dogs in the military as well. These vests for dogs have saved thousands of dogs’ lives. The cost is expensive for each vest but it provides safety against bullets, stabbings, explosives, and blunt force trauma (beatings).
The government, consumer audience, and just about anyone with opinion views these dogs as heroic, but these people may or may not realize what actually happens to these dogs once their term is finished.
Many of these dogs do not go back to a normal, typical dog’s life. Many of us have pets, dogs specifically, at home that we consider family. We spend time with them, walking them, grooming them, providing food and a home. Often times we even let them take over the house, our couches, and our beds. But often times, these military dogs do not get this experience after serving time in combat.
Programs are set up that military K9’s are able to find a home with a combat veteran. Often times, soldiers and these dogs form a special, inseparable bond that does not necessarily have to end once a term has ended. These dogs are going to be continually treated with the same love, care, and nurturing that they were treated with while serving our country.
Aside from organizations that pair up the dog with a veteran, there are other groups such as Save a Vet. They go to different fundraisers and events with information and even a few different military veteran dogs that are looking for a permanent home. By doing this, this specific organization informs people interested in adoption all about the situation and what it requires.
The family or person interested in adopting a veteran dog must become familiar with the background of the dog and what it has been through as well any injuries and the personality of the dog. Once background is taken care of, the interested adopter must be checked and be accepted as someone who can take care of a vet. Then the dog and his or her new family has the chance to meet him or her and become acquainted to see if it is a good fit.
Thousands of dogs are put into military combat for several different reasons, all just as dangerous as the others. They perform tasks that humans in the military cannot do as efficiently. For this, people are appreciative. But the safety and well-being of the dogs while in combat as well as the after care is something that needs to be recognized. Is it really being used at its highest potential?