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Challenges to military working dog management and care in the Kuwait theater of operation

By C. A. Toffoli, D. S. Rolfe

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Abstract

In a combat environment, troop safety and installation security are paramount. Documentation of the frequent use of explosive devices by insurgents in Southwest Asia has increased the need for augmentation of defensive capabilities. Military working dogs (MWDs) are trained and certified to perform missions supporting security and detection of explosives. Challenges arise in theater because the number of certified dogs available can be limited and the standards of housing and care that are available in the continental United States are not usually available in a combat theater. Planning, preparation, and training of MWD handlers, animal care specialists, and Veterinary Corps officers will maximize mission performance and MWD health. Some of the challenges and needs associated with management and care of the MWDs in the Kuwait theater of operation are discussed. Suggested improvements to the current deployment readiness paradigm are offered from the perspective of a staff veterinarian who was deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2004.

Date 2006
Publication Title Military Medicine
Volume 171
Issue 10
Pages 1002-1005
ISBN/ISSN 0026-4075
DOI 10.7205/MILMED.171.10.1002
Language English
Author Address Pfizer Global Research and Development, New London, CT 06320, USA.
Additional Language English
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Tags
  1. Animal health and hygiene
  2. Animal rights
  3. Animal welfare
  4. Asia
  5. Developed countries
  6. Dogs
  7. Guard dogs
  8. Mammals
  9. Middle East
  10. open access
  11. peer-reviewed
  12. Pets and companion animals
  13. terrorism
  14. training of animals
Badges
  1. open access
  2. peer-reviewed