"During the Great Patriotic War," they wrote, "dogs were used to destroy tanks. They usually attacked tanks from a distance of 150-200 metres. As the dog dashed under a tank frontally or at a 45 degree angle, the trigger of the explosive charge caught on the bottom of the tank and detonated with enormous force. In one such incident, in the Glukhova sector of the 160th Infantry Division, six dogs destroyed five enemy panzers within an hour.
"At Stalingrad, in the vicinity of the airfield, a squad of tank destroyer dogs destroyed thirteen tanks. At Kursk, in the zone of the 6th Guards Army, sixteen dogs destroyed twelve tanks that had broken through into the depth of the Soviet defences in the area of Tamarovka, Bykovo, Hill 244.5."
Dennis A. Seguin, of Hibbing, Minn., an expert in military vehicles, described the dog mine in detail in a short article in AFV News of November 1968 (vol. 3, no.. 6), published by the AFV Association. The explosive charge was twenty-six pounds, carried in two canvas pouches. The ignition device was a metal fuse box containing the standard Russian-type fuse, which was coupled to a booster charge and detonating cord. The booster consisted of about 200 grams of explosives. A wooden lever with the aid of a tension spring and safety pin held back the fuse plunger. When the safety pin was removed, the wooden trip lever extended over the dog's head and body. When the dog attempted to crawl under a tank, the lever would strike the hull bottom and ignite the charge so as to breach the tank's armour at its weakest point.
"In the autumn offensive in 1941 against Moscow, the Russians employed so-called mine dogs for destroying German tanks. In the manner of pack animals medium sized dogs carried demolition charges which were connected to a spindle fastened to the dog's back . . . . The dogs were trained to run under approaching tanks. In so doing the animal inadvertently brought the upright spindle, which was about six inches long, into contact with the belly of the tank and set off the charge.
"News of this insidious improvisation caused some alarm in the German panzer units and made them fire at all approaching dogs on sight. So far there is no evidence of any case where a German tank was destroyed by a mine dog. On the other hand, it was reported that several mine dogs fleeing from the fire of German tanks sought protection underneath Russian tanks which promptly blew up. One thing is certain: the spectre of mine dogs ceased just as abruptly as it had begun."
Contrdictary reports by both German and Russian sources mention numerous instances of panzers being destroyed by trained war-dogs bearing explosives. Soviet claims give credit of as many as 300 panzers having destroyed by this method.
As late as 1957, the US Department of the Army's TM 5-223 document, Foreign Mine Warfare Equipment summarizes use of the Soviet dog mine. But the United States was apparently not interested in developing an antitank dog corps of its own. It is pleasant to report that according to William H.. Hanson, the librarian of the U.S. Armor School, Fort Knox., there is no evidence that the American Army ever tested the concept of dog-versus-tank nor even showed any interest in the idea.