Butkus the Bullmastiff: from Rocky I (1976) and Rocky II (1979)
At the time of ownership, Stallone’s pet Bullmastiff, Butkus, appeared in the first Rocky film as an often-teased favorite pet of Balboa’s who lived in Adrian’s pet shop. In the Film, Butkus was given to Rocky as a gift from Adrian to keep him company while he trained. In real life however, Butkus was Sylvester Stallone’s dog. Stallone took the 145-pound (61 Kg) Butkus on the three-day train trip from L.A. to Philadelphia for the exterior filming of the film. The Bullmastiff’s rough look went well with the rough look, that the movie offered. Bullmastiffs are exceptionally devoted to their owners and make great guard dogs and pets as well.
Military dogs are dogs that are used to complement the various tasks that are needed to carry out a military operations. To some, this may seem to be contrary to humanitarian principles. But I look at it like this – This is how dogs first evolved – as a companion in hunting, and in fact, gun dogs like the Hungarian Vizsla are in use by even non military personnel.
All of a dog’s functions that are superior to those of a human, are used to round off an operation that would otherwise lack their fine capabilities. So let’s proceed by looking at a dog’s superior functions:
Smell and Hearing
The dog’s superior sense of smell, makes them very useful when used as Detection Dogs. These dogs are utilized to sniff out very small traces of the substance to be detected. They can include illegal narcotics, explosives, and even humans, as search dogs.
Speed and Aggressiveness
I know from experience that even a seasoned dog handler feels a chill up his spine when he sees a real threatening snarl from a German Shepherd. These dogs known as K9 (like ‘canine’) dogs are used to hunt down suspects, or prevent them from escaping. Apart from the German Shepherd, commonly used dogs also include the Doberman, and the American Pit Bull Terriers.
Easy to Train and Loyal
Dogs such as Attack Dogs can be specifically trained to chase and incapacitate (But not necessarily kill) targets. Dogs like the Irish Wolfhound are used for this purpose.
The loyalty of all the breeds are beyond question and all make excellent watchdogs, yet some breeds like the Bullmastiff are admirable guard dogs whose job doesn’t end with merely scaring away the intruder, but actively stopping them, and restraining them. Once again, the desired result can be easily achieved with training.
Are you serving in the military? Would you like to get a dog but not sure how and where? Read the story of a Command Chief Master Sgt. and his bulldog: how to buy a bulldog puppy when you are stationed in Europe.