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March 7, 2011

Man's Best Friend

It appears that the tragic death of a British soldier broke the heart of his bomb-sniffing dog. From the UK Telegraph

There was a sad story yesterday about the deaths of a soldier and his dog. Lance Corporal Liam Tasker was killed in a gun battle with the Taliban in Afghanistan this week. His devoted bomb-sniffing dog Theo, witnessed his master’s death, then shortly after suffered a seizure and also passed away. It’s been said that the dog “died of a broken heart”. Is this possible? Or is it just sentimental tosh, made up to make people feel better in some way about a tragic outcome?

It’s a difficult subject to analyse, but there are certainly plenty of anecdotes of animals that seem to have suffered severe grief-type reactions after forced separations from owners.

Theo's ashes are accompanying Cpl. Tasker's coffin back to Scotland.


More here.

16 comments:

Doom said...

I cannot say if there is or is not a connection. We understand humans not at all and animals no better. So when they connect, we simply cannot know. Regardless if God is entered into the equation or not, the question in any specific case will remain.

Still, I am quite sure some men who have seen their friends die, brothers really, might be left with such considerations as suicide. I am... quite positive that has happened many times, even to the death of the survivor. So, why not a dog? Especially one so heavily trained, obviously smart, and so attached through danger such as this. Ask yourself, how often does such an animal begin having seizures in mid-life in such circumstances? Still, one can never be certain.

T. F. Stern said...

Thanks for sharing. I'm a sucker for these kind of stories.

Woodsterman (Odie) said...

Replace the soldiers with A-bombs

Christopher - Conservative Perspective said...

I have raised several dogs in my life thus far and have two currently. It is not only my belief that dogs have a very strong emotional connection to their human companions but a fact.

This is a sad story but one, and again sadly to be repeated and as such I tend to go along with Odies' suggestion.

fuzzys dad said...

I have no doubts this happened.
I agree with Odie.Lets make the region glow in the dark camel parking.

Opus #6 said...

Poor sweet baby. So sad.

Teresa said...

That is so sad. Now they are together in heaven.

sig94 said...

Doom - I remember when my mom was at work that our dog would go into her room and stick his nose in one of her slippers and just stay there. He'd then dry hump my father's bathrobe. Was there something going on there?

sig94 said...

TFS - now that I know...

sig94 said...

Odie - A bombs are even worse than dogs. There was one M-85 7 kiloton bomb that threw itself off a B-58 near Iceland when the crew chief retired.

sig94 said...

Chris - I too have had several dogs in my life. That was one of the reasons I stopped drinking.

sig94 said...

FuzzyD - I believe that dogs go through separation anxiety. An extreme case for Theo could have caused his premature demise.

Cats not so much. If Theo was a bomb sniffing cat he probably would have been chewing on poor Cpl. Tasker before he was cold.

sig94 said...

Opus - oh, for a minute I thought you were referring to me. Sorry....

sig94 said...

Terese - I really don't place a lot of credence in that dogs have a pet park in Heaven. In fact, the Bible doesn't have a lot to say about dogs except that they were not particularly well thought of. I defer to 1 Kings 21:19-25, Exodus 11:7, 22:31, 1 Sam 16:43 and 23:14. Dogs were unclean (Lev. 11:27) and viewed as scavengers. Since they ate carrion - dead things - they also roll in them - they were not popular animals. I think the working breeds have changed that. There are 14 "ancient breeds" that are mostly derived from Asia; they are the Afghan Hound, Akita, Alaskan Malamute, Basenji, Chow Chow, Lhasa Apso, Pekingese, Saluki, Samoyed, Shar-Pei, Shiba Inu, Shih Tzu, Siberian Husky and Tibetan Terrier.

The_Kid said...

I'm with Odie.

Gorges Smythe said...

A dog's love is truer than that of most humans. Dern tootin' they can die of broken hearts, though medical "authorities" will deny it!