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Book About a Gun Shy Sniffer Dog to Help Struggling Readers

By February 14, 2017New Releases, News

A former sniffer dog who was retired from the front line in Afghanistan after becoming afraid of loud noises is to have his story told in a book designed to help struggling readers to become more confident.

The dog, a Belgian Malinois by the name of Vidar had been on duty for two years in the notoriously dangerous Helmand Province in Afghanistan with no apparent problems before suddenly becoming ‘gun shy’ a common term for those who are fearful of loud noises.

Spending over half his life in Afghanistan protecting the military personnel and the locals from attacks by the Taliban Vidar is credited with saving the lives of hundreds of British soldiers through finding roadside bombs before they could cause untold damage to both equipment and the men and women crewing them.

Yet after two years of service Vidar inexplicably became afraid of loud noises, initially it was the bangs of gunfire that had him cowering but he rapidly became so upset by all noise that even the sounds of the helicopters flying overhead would have the poor pup cowering in fear and it soon became clear that his military days were numbered. But what would become of this magnificent and still young dog?

Angie and Vidar in Afghanistan

Fortunately for Vidar Angie McDonnell an army medic who befriended him during her tour of Afghanistan had a plan and made it her mission to see Vidar safely retired to her home in the Vale of Glamorgan in Wales.

Ms McDonnell of 3 Medical Regiment described sniffer dogs as “the real heroes, they do the job of several soldiers”.
After finding Vidar cowering, she said: “I couldn’t bear to think of him being left in the kennels. He is such a big, frightened dog, I was worried that he might not get re-homed, that he would get overlooked and might end up being put down.”

Once settled in Angie decided to write about Vidar’s military exploits and the book Gun Shy  was born.

Gun Shy: The True Story of the Army Dog Scared of War is to be released as part of the Welsh Book Council’s quick reads which is designed to boost the confidence of adult readers who might otherwise struggle or maybe feel intimidated by books of a larger size.

If the story of Vidar has you wanting to know just what this brave dog got up to during his time in Afghanistan then you can get your own copy of his life’s story.

Gun Shy US

Gun Shy UK

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