March 13: National Military K9 Veterans Day, Commemorates First Day Of Training For Army’s War Dog Program In 1942
March 13 is National K9 Veterans Day. It commemorates 79 years since the creation of the army’s war dog program, also known as the K9 Corps.
Canines are now trained for a number of different jobs to aid their units from explosive ordinance detection to combat tracking. Some military working dog handlers, like Master-at-Arms Joseph Adames, said that it is important to respect the canines that have made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.
“It’s important because these dogs lay down their lives for minimum to nothing,” Adames said. “Sailors, soldiers, we all get paid, but they just want love from us handlers. They want toys and just that love and feedback from the handler. They don’t volunteer for themselves.”
Some of the most famous canines were among those remembered, including Sergeant Stubby, who is known as the “Original War Dog” for his service during World War I. Another canine veteran who received recognition was Cairo, the canine who accompanied SEAL Team 6 during the mission to kill Osama bin Laden.
Conan, the heroic canine who took part in the successful Al Baghdadi raid, was also among the canines honored. He was praised as “one of the most primetime age-wise service dogs the military has ever seen,” according to President Trump.
“We just gave Conan a medal and a plaque,” the 45th President stated. “I actually think Conan knew exactly what was going on. The dog is incredible, we’ve spent some good time with it. [He is] so brilliant so smart.”
No matter their role, all military dogs were honored as important members of their military units for their life-saving contributions and selfless service.
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