You will agree when I say that there’s no one more loyal than a dog. You will also agree when I say that a dog will lay down its life to save yours, if it truly belongs to you. 

American Grit

In world history, soldiers went to war to protect their boundaries. Dogs, more often than not, have assisted humans and went battles to protect their handlers. 

Whether a raid mission, a search operation or full-fledged warfare, a war canine will never step back, just like Conan, who played a significant role in the taking down of notorious Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. 

Here’s looking at 12 such inspiring pawsome lives. 

1. Sergeant Stubby – World War I  

One of the most famous war dog, Stubby was the only serving dog to be given the rank of a sergeant. This American Pit Bull Terrier was smuggled to France during World War I. 

He took part in 17 battles and 4 offences and was keen on warning his unit about poison-gas explosions, fallen members on the battlefield and even sniffed out a German spy on one such occasion. He died in his owner’s arms in 1926. 

The Sun

2. Smoky – World War II 

A Yorkshire Terrier, Smoky was one of the most decorated war dogs in WWII. Surviving more than a dozen combat missions and over 150 air raids, Smoky was a veteran that could warn his unit about incoming enemy shells precisely. 

He once pulled a telegraph wire through a narrow 70-foot pipe, saving a lot of lives from enemy fire. Smoky passed away in February 21, 1957, aged 14. 

Huffington Post

3. Kaiser – Vietnam War 

Kaiser, along with his handler, Marine Lance Cpl. Alfredo Salazar, took part in more than 30 combat patrols and 12 major operations throughout his service. 

Ambushed by the enemy infantry in 1966, Kaiser and Salazar were hit and the former succumbed but in his handler’s arms. He became the first canine to be martyred in action during the Vietnam War. 

NY Times

4. Nemo – Vietnam War 

Absolutely the most amazing dog and handler story, Nemo sacrificed himself for the betterment of his handler and country. 

After killing two Cong Vietnam Guerrillas, Bob Throneburg found himself occupied by more enemies. When under intense enemy fire, Nemo jumped and took a bullet in his eye. 

His heroics gave Throneburg crucial minutes to call in reinforcements. When Throneburg fell unconscious, Nemo climbed on top of him and protected his body from enemy bullets. Both later recovered from their set of injuries.  

Dog Time

5. Lex – United States Marine Corps 

An IED detector dog for the US Marine Corps, Lex was one of the most fearless dogs who loved to walk by his handler’s side. 

On 21st March, 2007 Lee, Lex’s handler, was killed after his C-Company base was attacked by insurgents in Iraq. After Lee’s passing away, Lex was never the same and was given early retirement. 

Lex passed away in 2012 after suffering from cancer. 


6. Mansi – LOC, Kashmir 

Mansi, a 4-year-old Labrador served in Kashmir’s territorial army with his handler Bashir Ahmad War. In a tragic turn of events, both Mansi and Bashir attained martyrdom while trying to foil a terror bid in Kupwara. 

Both were cremated side by side, exactly the way they were while serving their country; always together. 

The Better India

7. Rex – 14 Army Dog Unit, Delta Force 

A veteran war dog, Rex was a proven expert in sniffing out danger and tracking enemy activities. In 1995, as part of 14 Army Dog Unit of Delta Force in J&K, Rex tracked an injured terrorist for over 3 kms. 

This led to the recovery of 2 AK-47 rifles and 92 rounds of ammunition. He was awarded for repeating a similar feat in 1998. Sadly, he succumbed to an internal injury suffered in 1999. 

The Better India

8. Kambal – Himalayan Post, Central Glacier 

This massive Himalayan Mastiff was posted on one of the many patrolling posts at the Central Glacier. 

Exceptionally agile and sharp, Kambal accompanied his unit’s each and every patrol to every link point and came back only when they returned. His swift movement even in heavy snowfall made him a useful dog during critical operations. 


9. Putari – ITBP Patrolling Force 

Indo-Tibetan Border Police’s most decorated dog Putari was recently awarded a medal for becoming the Best Canine of the Year. 

Posted with 40th Battalion of ITBP in Chattisgarh, the canine sniffed out 20 kg explosives and saved close to a dozen lives. 


10. Chips – World War II 

An interesting mix of Collie-German Shepherd-Siberian Husky breeds, Chips became the most decorated war dog by the end of World War II. 

Apart from helping his unit take on a dangerous nest of Italian assault rifles, Chips helped his unit take 10 Italian hostages. He returned to his home in New York, in 1945. 


11. Cairo – K9 Unit, American Forces 

Part of an airborne unit, Cairo is one of the most famous dogs credited for his role in Osama Bin Laden’s killing by the US Forces. 

Descending with 81 Seals, the Belgian Malinois took part in ‘Operation Neptune Spear’, headed by the CIA and made significant contribution to Bin Laden’s death. 

3 Million Dogs

12. Caesar – Mumbai Police, 26/11 Attacks 

During the infamous Taj attacks on 26th November, 2011, Caesar was deployed with the Mumbai Police and saved multiple lives after sniffing out two hand grenades left by the terrorists at the busy CST railway station. 

Caesar, who was also a part of the search team at Nariman House, passed away in October, 2016 after suffering from a heart attack.

When soldiers take part in combats and wars, they do it for their country’s honour but when these brave dogs take part, they do it because they are meant to be the most loyal and obedient companions, even in the field of war.