Meet Liverpool's Own Luft-Woofer. City Man Trained Parachuting Dogs
Byline: ELEANOR BARKLOW @eleanorbarlow
A LIVERPOOL soldier trained dogs to parachute into action in World War II, a new book has revealed.
Lance Corporal Ken Bailey, a city soldier serving in the 13th (Lancashire) Parachute Battalion, was asked to train up "paradogs" who could parachute into Normandy for the D-Day landings.
Andrew Woolhouse, author of the book, 13 - Lucky For Some, spent five years researching the battalion.
He said: "Lance Cpl Bailey was asked by his commanding officer about the possibility of parachuting dogs.
"I think he had a veterinary background, which was why he was chosen."
Andrew uncovered documents written by Lance Cpl Bailey in which he explained the dogs were trained to get used to loud noises and smells like cordite - an explosive powder.
The dogs would be used as the "eyes and ears" of the soldiers on the ground and would freeze if they heard a noise.
The dogs would be given minimal food and water before the jump, and handlers would carry a piece of meat in their pockets as they parachuted out so the dogs would jump out after them.
Describing jumping out on one of the dummy runs with dog Reena, Lance Cpl Bailey said: "I called out and she immediately turned in my direction and wagged her tail vigorously. …