Target, Exceptional Canine

Date Posted: 06/01/2011
Posted in: Scout & Zoe's Doggie News   Tags: Target, antler chews, Target from Afghanistan

Today is a special day for two reasons. The first is Scout & Zoe's is announcing our next recipient of our Dog Lore, Exceptional Canine award. Please meet Target. The second reason is today would have been her birthday.

Target, a stray dog from Afghanistan was shot at, bombed and forgotten on the war ravaged streets of Afghanistan. Like many dogs in that country, they were casualties of war.....just part of the scenery. 

But to 50 soldiers far away from home, Target and her pals Sasha and Rufus became family; the soldier's children. The soldiers feed, loved and cared for the trio of ragamuffin dogs. The dogs, in return, provided unconditional love like only a dog can. Little did the soldiers know, the dogs would also provide protection to their new family.

Late one night in February while the soldiers were enjoying a little R&R in their barracks, the dogs started barking.

The barking escalated to a full scale attack. 

Unknown to the US soldiers inside, a suicide bomber was approaching the building intent on killing all 50 men inside. But the dogs, who were good judges of character, knew this intruder was up to no good. 

The dogs instinctively attacked the intruder. They bit, barked and latched on to this guy...mind you, he had 25 pounds of explosives attached to him!

When it became apparent to the intruder he would not be able to inflict death on all inside, he detonated himself just outside of the doorway...with the dogs still attacking him. 

The trio of dogs were all injured. Sasha was injured the worst and did not survive. Rufus and Target were nursed back to health. Five service men were injured. Fifty men's lives were saved because of the undying loyalty of three so-called mutts. 

Because of the efforts of organizations set on bringing dogs back to the U.S. from war-torn countries, Target and Rufus came to live in the United States. Rufus is enjoying life in Georgia and Target went to live in Arizona with Sgt. Terry Young. 

Both dogs were on Oprah and were being loved beyond measure.

Unfortunately, due to a series of horrific events in November, 2010, Target was euthanized at a shelter in Arizona. Call it a mix up, a case of mistaken identity or whatever, she did not have a long life here in the protection of the greatest country in the world. While a great number of our shelters and humane societies do a wonderful job, many of our shelters have a long way to go to provide stellar care and reuniting services for pets and pet owners. 

Target will live on in the hearts of the men she saved as well as in the hearts of the thousands who have joined Sgt. Terry Young in his quest to never allow this to happen to another family.

Today is Target's birthday. Happy birthday dear, sweet Target. Thank you for your service, courage and loyalty. Thank you for providing protection to those you deemed worthy. Thank you for your heart and gentle disposition.

Rest well sweet girl. We all remember and miss you.


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