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  • Writer's pictureMarina Veronica

10 Most Famous Dogs in History: Dog #7, one of the greatest war veterans

During the near 20-year span of the Vietnam War, the U.S. Armed Forces utilized thousands of military dogs (over 3,500 to be exact). Dogs played a key role in this war especially when compared to others. The Viet Cong were lithe and shrewd; hiding expertly among the humid jungle they called home, making it near impossible to find them, consequently giving them a huge advantage. Thanks to their incredible sense of smell and hearing abilities, sentry dogs were able to alert their human counterparts to the presence of enemy soldiers even when they couldn’t be seen.

Security Police K-9, Nemo A534, was among the several sentry dogs stationed at the Tan Son Nhut Air Base as part of security detail. While on watch, these dogs would alert soldiers of approaching enemies. Often these dogs lost their lives shortly after vocalizing their barks as early warning. On December 4th, 1966, Nemo and his handler successfully killed two VC but not without suffering wounds of their own. A bullet entered Nemo’s eye and left out of the side of his snout. Despite his injury, Nemo warded off any potential approachers by laying across his wounded handler’s body until military paramedics arrived. Nemo would never see out of his right eye again.

Shortly after, the military retired Nemo. As a retired, and decorated, war veteran, Nemo accompanied recruitment officers, hoping to gain K-9 enlisters. At his death in 1972, Nemo received a proper burial, with his tombstone inscribed “May all who hear the story of Nemo, know the true measure of man’s Best Friend”. Today he's considered not only one of the most famous dogs in history but one of the greatest war veterans.

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