The military working dog injured during the commando raid on Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadii has achieved ultimate hero status.
You can now purchase items emblazoned with the image of Conan, the Belgian Malinoisi.
Conan was injured during the raid but has since returned to duty and is making a full recovery, according to chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark Milley.
And now a website is selling T-shirts and mugs depicting Conan with the words “Zero Bark Thirty,” the headline featured on the cover of the New York Post on Oct. 29 highlighting Conan’s involvement in the raid.
Another shirt for sale features Conan’s image identifying him as a Delta Force military working dog.
The items are available from the website of Scent of Duty, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Military Times.
U.S. Special Operations Command declined comment on the use of Conan’s image. Nor would officials talk about the attributes they look for, or training they apply to military working dogs like Conan.
President Donald Trump announced Sunday that al-Baghdadi was killed after U.S. forces and military canines cornered him in a dead-end tunnel in Syria. Al-Baghdadi detonated his suicide vest, killing himself and three children, according to Trump.
Milley told reporters Monday that Conan was “slightly wounded” from the raid, but was on track to make a complete recovery. He refrained from disclosing Conan’s name though amid concerns over the classification of the unit involved in the raid.
Trump did release a photo of the dog on Monday, and Newsweek later reported that his name is Conan.
At least eight U.S. helicopters and nearly 100 American commandos were involved in the raid, which took place in Syria’s Idlib province on Saturday night.
The U.S. military launched the War Dog Program in 1943 to train dogs to serve in the military. Military working dogs usually serve as noncomissioned officers and outrank their handlers, according to the U.S. Army.
“Some say the custom was to prevent handlers from mistreating their dogs; hence, a dog is always one rank higher than its handler,” the Army said in a 2011 news release.
Retired military working dogs are available for adoption through a program at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland. Preference is given to civilian law enforcement agencies, followed by previous handlers, and then the general public.