Part 4 Omorrow Pedigree history: Cameo- Red Cross Dogs!

Posted: March 15, 2011 in Uncategorized

Red Cross Medal for canines.

Keeping Sentry duty.
Recovery of the wounded was a major priority of the dogs.

British Canine Medal.

Red Cross dog with Message satchel designed for canines.

Red Cross nurse with Rescue/Recovery Alsatian.
Nestor vom Wiegerfelsen- Red Cross Dog, Army Messenger.

The dogs of the Red Cross were first brought into service during the First World War.  Many different breeds were employed, including mixed breeds.  The dogs were “drafted” into service from private owners, many of whom volunteered their family pets for the training.  Look at the recruiting poster below! 

War Poster for recruiting of RedCross and Military dogs.

WarDogs were started during WWI, in many European countries, as well as Canada, while  the United States  lagged behind because they lacked a proper training program for the canines.  Instead, The U.S. military purchased trained dogs from France.  The American Expeditionary Forces began utilizing their dogs in late 1918 as Sentry Guards.  The American Military still had no plans for their own training of canine units until after the beginning of WWII.   In 1942,  Military, and Red Cross dogs began to be prepared for work in facilities located in Virginia, Fort Robinson, Nebraska, Camp Rimini Montana, and San Carlos, California.

By this time, Germany, Britain, France and Spain were turning out well trained dogs and Handlers in great numbers.  Most were used as rescue animals, sentries, and trackers.  This Red Cross photo from the time depicts a Red Cross nurse with such a dog.
    Many other dogs were used as Sentry’s or Carrying important communiques from front line positions to rear-command centers, acting as “Homing Dogs”!    
   More pictures to come in the last part of Cameo’s Pedigree!!!  Part 5.         
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