Kuno, the Belgian Malinois, has proven beyond doubt that dogs are indeed man’s best friends.
The British Army canine, who served alongside British Special Forces in the fight against Al Qaeda, sustained severe injuries that altered his life. In recognition of his service, the dog has been bestowed with the Dickin Medal, the highest accolade that an animal can receive in the British military, by the People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA).
Let me put it in simpler terms: receiving the Victoria Cross, which is the highest military honor in the United Kingdom, is equivalent to what Kuno, the dog, achieved in the animal world. In a press release by PDSA veterinary charity, Jan McLoughlin acknowledged Kuno as a genuine hero. This recognition was given to Kuno for his remarkable courage during a mission in Afghanistan in 2019.
During a military mission, a four-year-old dog was assigned to assist British soldiers in attacking an Al-Qaeda compound that was heavily armed. However, the attack force faced a setback when they were trapped by a barrage of grenades and machine-gun fire from a rebel group that had night-sight goggles.
The situation at the compound was dire as both British and Afghan troops were unable to take action without risking casualties. It was Kuno, who was hidden within the compound, who ultimately broke the deadlock. After being introduced by his handler, Kuno swiftly made his move, incapacitating one rebel and uncovering a stash of explosives. He then charged through the compound’s doorway to confront the remaining rebels.
In a heroic act, Kuno, a military dog, attacked an Al-Qaeda fighter and saved numerous lives during a crucial mission. Kuno sustained injuries to both hind legs when the gunman fired at him in the dark. However, he continued to attack the fighter and wrestled him to the ground until the attack force arrived and cleared the area. Despite his injuries, Kuno performed his duty without fail and changed the course of the mission. He was awarded the PDSA Dickin Medal for his bravery and devotion to duty. Kuno returned to the UK with his handler but required several surgeries to recover from the injuries sustained during the mission.
The brave military dog, Kuno, underwent surgery that involved amputating a part of one of his rear paws to prevent life-threatening infections. Fortunately, he has since made a full recovery and has become the first UK Military dog to receive customized prosthetic limbs. British policy secretary Ben Wallace expressed his excitement over Kuno receiving the PDSA Dickin Medal, acknowledging the dog’s training, bravery, and dedication to duty, which saved lives on the day of his mission. The story of Kuno serves as a reminder of the vital role that military working dogs play in keeping us all safe. Kuno is the 72nd recipient of the Dickin Medal, which was established in December 1943 at the end of World War II.