Modern Day Conflict
In 2011, US Special Forces soldiers were in Iraq on a top secret mission, using military dogs to sniff out bombs and potential enemy soldiers hiding underground. Cairo, a Navy SEAL–trained Belgian Malinois, was selected from a number of other qualified candidates for this very important mission.
Working tirelessly night after night, Cairo needed to sniff the perimeter of a compound that was surrounded with barbed-wire fences. It was most likely booby-trapped or armed with guards, and Cairo was trained to attack enemies on command. Navy SEAL dogs are equipped with vests, which include a parachute and night vision goggles. Fully equipped with the newest technology, Cairo helped the soldiers succeed in an intense mission that made him famous around the world: finding Osama bin Laden.
Now retired, Cairo has been adopted by a family who has a beagle as his playmate. Cairo helps put groceries away, carrying bags from the car to the house.
Today, we remember Buster, a springer spaniel who served with British forces as an arms and explosive search dog,
Widely believed to have completed more tours than any other military dog, he gave advanced warning of bombers and hidden IEDs (improvised explosive devices). He also took a leave in cheering up the troops, says his handler. 'I'd find some of the soldiers on the cot beds with him, just chatting away. They felt they could confide in him and it wouldn't be going anywhere else." He also made friends with local Afghans when he went out on patrol.
"We soon had a long train of children in tow - like a canine Pied Piper, Buster drew in his crowd and entertained them," says Flt Sgt Barrow.
His work in sniffing out bombs and booby traps before they could kill British service personnel means that he saved a huge amount of lives in Bosnia, Afghanistan and other war-zones around the world. To reward his years of hard work, Buster was given the honour of becoming the official lifetime mascot of the RAF Police.