• Navy SEAL Dogs

  • My Tale of Training Canines for Combat
  • By: Mike Ritland
  • Narrated by: Michael Kramer
  • Length: 6 hrs and 11 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (402 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Navy SEAL teams' elite K9 warriors do it all - from detecting explosives to eliminating the bad guys. These powerful dogs are also some of the smartest and most highly skilled working animals on the planet. Mike Ritland's job is to train them. This is the tale of how Ritland discovered his passion and grew up to train these elite dogs. After becoming a SEAL, he was on combat deployment in Iraq when he saw a military working dog in action, and he instantly knew he'd found his true calling. Ritland eventually started his own company to train and supply working and protection dogs for the U.S. government, the Department of Defense, and other clients. He also started the Warrior Dog Foundation to help retired Special Operations dogs live long and happy lives after their service.

©2013 Michael Ritland (P)2014 Tantor
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

Critic Reviews

"Fascinating... About time these heroes got the attention they deserved for a young audience." ( Kirkus)

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What listeners say about Navy SEAL Dogs

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Engaging

Ritland tells of his early life and interest in canines. He joined the NAVY at age 17 and eventually became a SEAL and then a dog handler, then MWD (Military Working Dog) trainer. I like that Ritland warns that the breeds of dogs, he trains in the Navy SEALs are not a breed for the average city bound civilian.

Ritland goes into depth about how dogs are chosen; the temperament needed for the Special Operation Forces dogs. He discusses the enormous amount of training that goes into each dog and handler team. Except when deployed into a war zone, the book takes place at his dog training facility in San Diego, California.
This book is not for everyone as it goes into great detail about the training and the importance of the K-9 teams in combat rather than an entertaining story. I understand there is a children’s version of the book.

The book is well written, the author does a good job telling about his time training and handling MWDs. Some of the stories are sad, but some have humor, but all reveal the bond between the dog and the handler. Ritland is now retired from the Navy and has his own MWD training facility. He is also working with the Warrior Dog Foundation. The Foundation’s goal is to make certain that retired MWDs are able to live out the remainder of their lives in a positive environment. If you are interested in canines and the military, this book should interest you.

The book is a little over 6 hours long. Michael Kramer does a great job narrating the book. Kramer is an actor and an award-winning audiobook narrator.


19 people found this helpful

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great read

loved this book! everybody needs to read this book and have a better understanding of what our dogs go through.

8 people found this helpful

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  • RJ
  • 02-02-17

What's a MWD?

Mike Ritland, Navy Seal and MWD dog trainer, tells of his interest turning to passion in training dogs for one of the most dangerous duties on earth; a Navy Seal Dog. This is a very interesting and quite enjoyable recounting of what the dogs go through in their training and what is expected of them when that training is done. I was hoping for more accounts of actual missions that these dogs and their handlers experienced, but I probably grabbed the wrong book. The book was still enjoyable even though there were only a couple accounts of real missions. Thank you for your work and dedication Mike.

5 people found this helpful

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Heroic Dogs and Their Trainers

The story line was outstanding and the reader read the book in a superb manner. Kramer was easy to listen to and he did a great narration of the book.

4 people found this helpful

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Expected more

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

First of all my respects to the men & women who are serving or have served to proect our country. I purchased the book looking forward to getting some insight into how our Navy Seals make use of their dogs and how they go about training them. I really enjoyed the anecdotes that related the situations where the Navy Seals make use of their dogs and the description of the types of training they must have. Where I was left wanting more was on the specifics of the training. This was a fast read for me. Although I didn't like Michael Kramers monotone raspy voice and almost cocky sounding lack of inflections I was able to overcome it and focused on the story.

What three words best describe Michael Kramer’s performance?

raspy monotone voice

4 people found this helpful

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Good listen

While the content isn't "exciting" it's very educational and well written. I never thought the training of an MWD would be so exhausting.

4 people found this helpful

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Emphasis on SEAL, not dog

This book I better suited to Military history enthusiasts than to people with dog handling/behavior interests.

2 people found this helpful

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Awesome Book

I loved the book. It goes well with his other books. Great Author.

2 people found this helpful

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Good listen

Enjoyed this performance. Brozej captures Mike Ritlands' storytelling in full unvarnished fashion. Narration's little dull.

1 person found this helpful

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Great content, didn’t like narrator’s voice/inflection/cadence

Great insight to the training and care these amazing dogs receive by a proven expert in the field! Narrator wasn’t my cup of tea.