Fightin’ Felines: 8 Cats That Served On The Front Lines During World Wars I and II

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4. Taking Up Post

Cats might like nice cozy spaces, but this one settled for a sandbagged dugout. He seemed unconcerned about his location, which was also on the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey during World War I.

3. Hanging Out on the Ship

Few sailors are so privileged that they receive supervised relaxation. During World War II, these two cats even got a custom-made hammock! The felines were getting in their rest and relaxation on the Australian destroyer HMAS Nizam.

2. Love the One You’re With

When it comes to the Polish, legend has it that cats on ships can be a good luck charm. This kitty trio was being cuddled by sailors on the Polish destroyer ORP Piorun during World War II. Apparently, it is a bad omen if the cats desert the ship before she sets sail.

1. Peebles the Sailor Cat

Peebles was the mascot of the British Royal Navy’s HMS Western Isles during World War II. This cat took advantage of his time on the water by learning a few fun skills, like shaking hands with strangers and jumping through hoops made by his lieutenant commander.

Much has changed in the military field since World Wars I and II, but that doesn’t mean the role for cats has gone away. Where there are pests, cats will be needed, and they likely won’t be far behind their prey.

Cats aren’t the only animals with wartime experience. Their canine counterparts have served in the military as well, and have even garnered recognition for their efforts. Click the link below to learn about the honors recently bestowed upon five U.S. military dogs.


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