Dogs have long assisted soldiers in all branches of the military. They are used in direct combat situations to do dangerous yet necessary tasks.
Layka is a Belgian Malinois who served in Afghanistan in May 2013, where she found herself one day in the middle of an ambush firefight.
Layka was sent out to scout a nearby building and see if it was clear of attackers. She did her duty and helped protect her unit, but was hit four times by bullets. After the battle, she was immediately rushed to a hospital for surgery.
Doctors saved Layka’s life, but she lost her front leg as a result. Her trainer and handler, Julian McDonald, felt guilty about what happened to the dog, even though she saved his and many other soldiers lives.
Julian decided to adopt Layka, despite her aggression, which lengthened the process. But Layka eventually became comfortable with her new life and role, and found a happy home as a reward.
See the video below to learn more of Layka’s story: