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    Always Faithful--War Dog with Marine Handler and Japanese Prisoner.

    Always Faithful--War Dog with Marine Handler and Japanese Prisoner.
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    Always Faithful--War Dog with Marine Handler and Japanese Prisoner.
    Item Number: AMH-02

    Price: $79.50

    Type: Marine
    Period: World War II
    Scale: 1/30 Scale

    "Always Faithful"


          During WWII, the war dogs were specially trained to lead infantry points on advances, explored caves, pill boxes, dugouts, and scouted fortified positions. They did sentry duty with military police at crossroads day and night.  They occupied foxholes in forward outposts at night.  The dogs literally saved the lives of hundreds, perhaps thousands of Marines in the South Pacific. The Marine dogs were named "Devildogs," a name that the Marines earned during WWI, fighting against the Germans. Dobermans were used mostly at the start of the war but also Labradors, German Shepherds and other breeds were used.  The German Shepherd was the preferred breed at the end of the war. The dogs that served and their Marine Handler were subjected to hardship and danger that I can't even begin to imagine.  These experiences built a bond of loyalty between dog and man whose strength was incredible.  This is why I named the set "Always Faithful."

          Any of the Marine war dogs had come from patriotic citizens.  The Marine Corps had promised the dogs that survived would be returned to their owners at the end of the war.  True to their word the dogs were returned. Not all of the dogs went back to their original owners.  Some "retired" from the Marine Corps with their handlers and lived out their civilian lives with these courageous men. The First Marine Dog Platoon consisted of 48 enlisted men working in pairs as handlers for the 21 Dobermans and three Shepherds, plus six enlisted instructors and headquarters personnel.  It was under the command of First Lieutenant Clyde A Henderson, a Cleveland high school teacher, who had been a Doberman fancier and amateur trainer for a decade before the war.  No unit protected by one of the dogs was ever ambushed by the Japanese or was there ever a case of Japanese infiltration. More than 1,000 dogs had trained as Marine Dogs during World War II. .

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