MONTHLY SPOTLIGHT

Mine Detection Dog Fit For a "King" 

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On a typical day, Mine Detection Dog Marschall is up by 7:00 a.m. so his kennel can be cleaned by his Peshmerga handler, Mohammed, and he can receive a health check. Since it is winter in Erbil, Kurdistan, Marschall doesn't start training until 8:30 a.m. During the summer months, Marschall would be out in the field as early as 6:00 a.m. to avoid the heat of the day. He performs a series of training activities until 12:00 p.m., then takes a break while Mohammed and the other Peshmerga handlers have lunch. During his training, Marschall sharpens his skills so he can effectively search open areas, cars, and buildings for the explosive odors found in landmines. By training on a daily basis, Marschall's bond with Mohammed is continuously strengthened, which is crucial during field operations. During the afternoon, Marschall will either continue his training, or get groomed if it is raining or too muddy to train outdoors. In the evening, he will have another health check and be fed. After training, Marschall loves to relax and observe the other dogs jump around in their kennels.  

 

"Marschall is very friendly with everyone. Even soldiers from other units have heard of Marschall and come to visit him." - Mohammed

 

MDD Marschall was donated to the Peshmerga's K9 Unit in September 2018 and was sponsored by Glenelg Country School (Maryland) in honor of the John and Paula Marschall family. MDD Marschall received his certification to International Mine Action Standards in November, and as soon as the weather improves he will begin providing invaluable assistance to the Peshmerga by increasing their capacity in landmine clearance operations.

 

Mohammed notes that Marschall has been nicknamed "King" by other handlers, because of his large size and personality. He may look intimidating on the outside, but Marschall is a smart, friendly, and exceptionally obedient dog. Mohammed remarks that while many of the other MDDs are quite hyper and jump around in their kennels, Marschall is calm and content, just another testament to his stately nickname "King"!  Marschall is a model MDD, and once his whole team completes training in the Spring, he and Mohammed will commence searching for landmines in the field. 

 

MLI began our involvement with the Ministry of Peshmerga in 2016 in an effort to help them clear  the land of mines, IEDs, and booby traps left by ISIS. MLI has donated 18 Mine and Explosive Detection Dogs to the Peshmerga since then, along with all the necessary training for the dogs and handlers. All of the dogs have been sponsored privately by American citizens. We thank our donors for all of your support, without which our humanitarian work would not be possible. 

 

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MDD Marschall waits for commands from his handler, Mohammed, after he indicated the location of a landmine in a training field

 
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Visit: www.marshall-legacy.org Call: (703) 243-9200 
2425 Wilson Boulevard #240 | Arlington | Virginia | 22201 External Link

 
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