Although we mostly think of dogs as our companions and best friends, we often underestimate just how smart and incredible these animals can be. Dogs can serve as vital-support or emotional-support animals for those who have trauma or emotional disturbances. For those who go missing or disappear, there are search and rescue dogs. Dogs may even serve in very dangerous places, such as those in the military and army —some of these include sniffing out bombs.
Meet one of these brave animals, a military dog named Mali.
Mali is an eight-year-old Belgian Malinois who served in Afghanistan in 2012.
Back then Mali was serving with UK soldiers fighting against the Taliban. During his serving, Mali had many dangerous missions, one of which resulted in a nearby grenade explosion injuring his chest, legs, and ear. Mali was sent home for treatment to recover from all those war wounds. But his journey didn’t stop there.
Mali was awarded the PDSA for his bravery and courage.
Dickin Medal reward was created in 1943. Since then it was bestowed to only 31 other dogs.
Receiving the Dickin Medal is a major honor, one which has only gone to 69 animals.
Corporal Daniel Hatley was the one to award Mali. As Hatley tried to drape the medal around Mali’s neck, Mali turned and bit down on the ribbon. He thought they were playing tug of war and instead of accepting it he decided to chew on it! This amazing moment was captured in a tweet and posted on the internet.
In all, this story reminds us of the bravery of this extraordinary animal—who reminded us all that he’s still just a dog at heart.
We often ask animals to difficult and unpleasant tasks for us in modern society. It’s very pleasant to know that those trials get honored and recognized. Nevertheless, Mali’s biting at the medal is a touching reminder that the acts that the award was meant to signify are simply human meddling in dog affairs. Perhaps Mali’s playfulness is a little more political than it may seem at first glance… or maybe he just wants to play.
In any event, thanks for all your bravery and congratulations, Mali!
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