This Thing Called Courage

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Tragic, But No Surprise....

Soldier, loyal dog make final journey

Associated Press / March 11, 2011

LONDON — Liam and Theo were a team, fast friends doing a dangerous job — searching out roadside bombs laid by insurgents in Afghanistan.


The British soldier and his irrepressible dog worked and played together for months, and died on the same day. Yesterday, they came home, flown back to Britain in a somber ceremony for the soldier remembered for his empathy with animals and the companion he loved.

Lance Corporal Liam Tasker, a dog handler with the Royal Army Veterinary Corps, was killed in a firefight with insurgents in Helmand Province on March 1 as he searched for explosives with Theo, a bomb-sniffing springer spaniel mix. The dog suffered a fatal seizure hours later at a British army base, probably brought about by stress.

Military officials will not go so far as to say Theo died of a broken heart — but that may not be far from the truth. “I think we often underestimate the grieving process in dogs,’’ said Elaine Pendlebury, a senior veterinarian with animal charity PDSA. “Some dogs react very severely to their partner’s loss.’’

6 Comments:

Blogger Nigel said...

Of course they grieve. Well, some do. I remember at a wake we were singing and our little fox terrier's head drooped lower and lower and his eyes were pools of woe.

A sad piece of news. Dogs are loyal, and they love you for you. They don't care about whether you're fat or grumpy or boring. They just love you, willy nilly.

But ppl love you only under advisement. Their love is conditional.

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