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U.S. Military Gives Clarification About Caged Dogs In Afghanistan

Written by: Molly Weinfurter
Molly Weinfurter is a writer for iHeartDogs, and she’s passionate about helping animals in need. She volunteers for Bailing Out Benji and a local dog rescue.Read more
| Published on September 1, 2021

Photos of military dogs left in cages in Afghanistan sparked a lot of controversy on social media. Despite many organizations wanting to help, the U.S. Military has a different story on the matter. According to the Pentagon, no U.S. military dogs were left behind in Afghanistan. They insist that the U.S. Military would never neglect their working dogs by leaving them behind.

However, even with this new statement, people are still skeptical. Even a decorated veteran is unsure what to believe. There is still lots of information to uncover, but if there are dogs abandoned in Kabul, they deserve to be rescued.

Dogs Abandoned in Afghanistan
Image: @sampetersnevada/Facebook

U.S. Military’s Statement

On Monday, August 30th, 2021, the Pentagon confirmed that all U.S. Troops left Afghanistan. Images of dogs in crates on social media raised fears that the working dogs didn’t make it on the flight. Yet, officials insist that isn’t true.

“To correct erroneous reports, the U.S. Military did not leave any dogs in cages at Hamid Karzai International Airport, including the reported military working dogs,” said John Kirby, press secretary of the Pentagon. “Photos circulating online were animals under the care of the Kabul Small Animal Rescue, not dogs under our care.”

Eric Pahon, another spokesperson for the Pentagon, explained that the U.S. forces worked hard to help Kabul Small Animal Rescue. To his knowledge, the dogs in the image are strays, not any type of working dogs.

German Shepherd in Afghanistan
Image: @KSAnimalRescue/Twitter

“All our working dogs left with their handlers. We would not leave them behind. To suggest otherwise is ridiculous,” another spokesperson added.

However, despite all these clarifications, there’s still controversy. Many people believe there’s more to the story, including Maj. Sam Peters, who is a veteran and former working dog handler. He claims that there are lots of unanswered questions about the exit flight.

Many Questions Left Unanswered

Peters stated that he’s hopeful that no dogs were abandoned. Yet, he believes that something is fishy about these explanations. He thinks the U.S. Military should release more information about their withdrawal efforts.

He explained that the Kabul airport was the final fallback point in Afghanistan for the United States military. The U.S. Military also never denied that the animals in the photos were at the Kabul airport. So, Peters doesn’t understand how an animal shelter could be set up in the airport when it was so difficult for U.S. citizens to get to the gate. In his eyes, something isn’t adding up.

Sam Peters and Working Dog
Image: @sampetersnevada/Facebook

There’s not enough information to determine the full story yet, but there are many different points of view. The one thing everyone seems to agree on is that all dedicated working dogs need to be safe and protected.

Even if there are no working dogs left in Afghanistan, there are still plenty of other animals that need saving. Kabul Small Animal Rescue is doing everything they can to rescue dogs in Afghanistan, and they will post updates when more information is available.

Featured Image: @sampetersnevada/Facebook

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