Canines in Combat

They’ve crept through the remote caves of Afghanistan and fought in active war zones all over the world. The US Navy’s canine workers are some of the military’s best protectors—and weapons.   

Highly trained dogs have been especially important in covert operations with Navy SEALs. Dogs can sniff out improvised explosive devices and other bombs. They also help to track suspects and apprehend enemies. 

Like their human counterparts, military pups require a great deal of training. Mike Ritland, a canine instructor and former Navy SEAL, says that this process often begins before birth, when pregnant mothers are given serene spots to help minimize stress. Once they’re born, puppies are weaned earlier and even separated from their litters to promote their independence. 

After the dogs leave puppyhood behind, the real work begins. Interested in how Ritland and other trainers help develop these elite canine warriors? We have the fully story in our Instaread on Navy SEAL Dogs.

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