Sergeant Stubby was a pit bull type dog that was found and “enlisted” by Private Conroy during World War I. The puppy’s short tail gave him a name, and the Army gave him a mission.
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Here's the story of how one dog rose to the rank of sergeant in the United States Army during World War I, as excerpted from by Giles Milton, the basis for the podcast, Unknown History.
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Just applied 1 tube of Sergeant's Gold to my 40lb Shepherd. No ill effect's as of yet. Exp. date stamped on top of box 10/28/11. A picture illistration on the back of the box (top right corner) shows to apply from shoulder blades to stop at 'mid-back', so dog can't reach around to bite or lick applied area.
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But this thing wasn't done yet. While serving in the Argonne Forest during the Meuse-Argonne campaign of September 1918, Stubby was patrolling the trenches when he discovered a camouflaged German spy hiding out mapping the Allied trenches. Stubby smelled the Kraut on this dude and started freaking the hell out, woofing at this dude like a damned psychotic bark machine, and nothing this poor chump could do to stop Stubby from freaking out on him. Finally, convinced that he wasn't going to shut the damn dog up, the German turned and ran for it. That was just the opportunity Stubby was looking for. The dog hauled ass, ran this guy down from behind, launched itself like a hair-covered missile, and bit into his calf, dropping the spy to the ground. Then Stubby bit the dude on the ass and locked his jaws shut, refusing to give this dude his ass back (or let him move in any way at all) until Americans showed up to arrest him. For his actions, Stubby the Ass-Biting Maniac Dog was given a battlefield promotion to the rank of Sergeant, which, awesomely enough, meant that the dog now outranked his owner, who was only a Corporal by this point. Stubby became the first dog to be promoted to a rank the army, and, as a bitchin' side note, when the Americans brought the German spy back to camp they stripped the prisoner of his Iron Cross and pinned the German military medal on the dog's jacket instead.Sergeant Kyle Smith, who served with his 11-year-old German Shepherd Bodza, cradled Bodza in an American flag his superiors allowed him to drape over the dog. Smith told , "I hugged him and told him that I loved him a lot . . . He was as much a part of the Air Force as me. I couldn't have done the mission I did without him there." Smith told , “I held him in my arms the entire time. I’ve never cried that much my entire life.”