Sunday, September 25, 2011

A Dog Named Hobo

This is a true story about a British military dog named Hobo, whose job is to sniff out bombs.  Hobo is part of the 2nd  Battalion of the Royal Gurkha Rifles, and these soldiers are stationed in Helmand Province in Afghanistan.  The soldiers love Hobo because he is always romping around the base in a happy way.  Also, he has saved a bunch of lives by sniffing out bombs.  Which is another good reason to love him.

Hobo with some of the men in his unit

Anyway, on July 21, Hobo was on patrol in the Nahr-e-Seraj area with some members of his battalion plus some soldiers from the Afghan National Army.  Suddenly, there was an ambush by the insurgents, who were shooting automatic weapons and rocket-propelled grenades.

Hobo got hit by shrapnel in his neck, body, and abdomen.  The soldiers gave him first aid to try to stop the bleeding.  Hobo was very calm and just stood there, letting them take care of him.  Then he got put on a U.S. medical helicopter with some wounded soldiers.  As soon as the helicopter landed, Hobo was taken to a veterinary care center, and the vets gave him fluids because he lost a bunch of blood.  But they did not have to do surgery on him, so that was good.

Hobo with Private Patrick Medhurst-Feeny,
a vet tech who helped treat him

In about 10 days, Hobo had already got well enough to go back to his unit.  The soldiers were all very happy to see him there again.  On August 1, Hobo turned 3 years old.  He will finish his tour in Afghanistan in November, and after that he will go back to live in the UK, where he will be a demonstration dog.  I guess he will demonstrate how dogs sniff out bombs, but that part wasn't explained in the articles I read.

Hobo now has a new nickname, which is "The Luckiest Hobo."  And he also might be given the Dickin Medal, which is the highest award an animal can win for bravery.


  1. Yeah for HOBO!! I'm sooo very happy and relieved he survived being hit by shrapnel...and hit in so many places. I certainly think Hobo deserves the Dickin Medal, if not a few other medals!! Thanks for today's blog and I hope lots of people read this great story!
    Love, AP