Miso: a Mine Detection Dog from Iraq

May 22, 2012

As we begin to get ready for Memorial Day, we wanted to share this guest blog written by Holly, the parent of one of our campers, Miso.  We want to thank Holly for taking the time to share this amazing story!!  If you have a Pet Camp camper story you want to share, please email it to us at havingfun@petcamp.com.

Miso is what they call an MDD or a Mine Detection Dog. He was specially trained to detect the explosive odors found in landmines. Remarkably Miso spent eight years ‘sniffing out’ landmines and saving lives in Iraq. Because these weapons of war are buried, they are hard to find and continue to kill and injure hundreds of Iraqi civilian men, women and children each each year. Dogs have a keen sense of smell and are used in Iraq to safely and effectively locate mines that are then carefully extracted from the ground.

During Miso’s years of service with Iraqi Mine and UXO Clearance Organization, he and his buddies sniffed out over 90 acres of mine-contaminated land in and around Basra and Baghdad. The land they searched was used to build the College of Agriculture in Baghdad, and for infrastructure purposes in southern Ramallah. These dogs have truly helped to make Iraq a safer and better place.

On March 27th Miso and four other dogs – Blek, Malysh, Nero and Rocky – arrived in Washington DC from Iraq. These retired dogs were adopted by American families through an innovative partnership between SPCA International and the Marshall Legacy Institute. Miso resides with the Gilthorpes in Noe Valley and when he is not at Pet Camp swimming or socializing with other dogs, he spends his days lounging around the backyard chewing on toys.

SPCA International’s Operation Baghdad Pups program provides veterinary care and coordinates the complicated logistics and transportation required to reunite service men and women back in the U.S. with the dogs they befriend while on deployment in the Middle East. To date they have saved 318 dogs, 80 cats and 1 donkey. The Marshall Legacy Institute, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping mine-affected countries help themselves, provides highly trained Mine Detection Dog capacities to help accelerate the pace of mine clearance operations.

If you would like to donate to the SPCIA Operation Baghdad Pups program please visit my page to save other animals like Miso: http://www.stayclassy.org/fundraise?fcid=198286#

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