‘No Ordinary Dog’ Tells Story of Navy SEAL’s Hero Dog from Bin Laden Mission

Will Chesney with Cairo
Will Chesney

Military dogs are “part of the family [and] team,” said Will Chesney, retired Navy SEAL dog handler and author of No Ordinary Dog: My Partner from the SEAL Teams to the Bin Laden Raid, offering his reflections on Friday’s edition of SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Daily with host Alex Marlow.

Chesney was joined by retired Navy SEAL Mark Semos, writer and producer of CBS’s SEAL Team.

“I considered him like my kid,” said Chesney of Cairo, the Belgian Malinois he handled for years. “In the team, he’s actually part of the family — part of the team — we always said he’s my kid, and everybody else, they’re his uncles. He’d always listen to me, but also to everybody else, but I was always his dad.”

Chesney added, “The bond is crazy. You’re asking the dog to risk his life over and over again. You love dogs to begin with, and take that bond and just multiply it, because he’s risking life pretty much every night.

Cairo had “switch,” Chesney recalled, allowing the dog to differentiate between work and down time. “Cairo had that switch,” he added, remembering how his SEAL teammates enjoyed playing with Cairo “like a family pet.”


Dog candidates for the Navy SEAL teams go through a rigorous selection and training process, explained Chesney.

“[We are] making sure the dog’s going to stay in the fight,” Chesney remarked. “You’re asking the dog to go — at night — away from his handlers into a dark room to fight somebody twice his size. You have to make sure that dog’s not going run away. You want that dog to be engaged into the fights. One of the major tests is to find out the dog’s drive in that situation.”

Semos described No Ordinary Dog as “the true story of what happened with this dog, because it is an important part of history. It’s a beautiful story that showed you told these dogs are as much a team guy as any other Navy SEAL that ever put the trident on.”

“One of the reasons we all attach ourselves and find ourselves so sympathetic to dogs is because, in a way, they do something that people can’t,” stated Semos. “They don’t dwell in the past. They don’t worry about the future. They live perfectly in the ever-present here and now, just always present. It’s a really powerful message. … It’s something we can all apply to our lives.”

Cairo was put down in April 2015.

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