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Trident K9 Warriors: My Tale from the Training Ground to the Battlefield with Elite Navy SEAL Canines

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  1,115 Ratings  ·  139 Reviews
The New York Times bestseller featured on 60 Minutes, this is the first book to take readers inside the world of elite Navy SEAL dogs.

As a Navy SEAL during a combat deployment in Iraq, Mike Ritland saw a military working dog in action and instantly knew he'd found his true calling. Ritland started his own company training and supplying dogs for the SEAL teams, U.S. Governm
Paperback, 288 pages
Published January 14th 2014 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published March 5th 2013)
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Petra Eggs
In an effort to understand what makes men want to fight, want to go to war, I have read quite a few military books over the last few years. This one was about Navy Seals and their dogs.

It presented a lot of information on how the dogs are selected, how they are trained and how they are used. That sounds interesting but because there was no narrative structure at all, and the information and stories just jumped around, it was more 'meh' than 'wow'. The author was tremendously emotionally involved
Apr 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: calibre
I don’t review books on too often, because a lot of times I don’t have much to say beyond, I really liked book X. Today I’m going to attempt to do Trident K9 Warrior by Michael Ritland some justice.

I’ll start by confessing I’m kind of a dog geek (read; I have a blog about my dog) and have a little exposure to working dogs/helpers/Schutzhund/IPO/GSD/MALS but am beyond green in the sport (read; my dog has a BH and I did a summersault during the escape portion of my attempt to get ce
Kelly Carter
If you are interested in Navy SEALs, you'll enjoy this book. If you love dogs, especially working dogs, you'll enjoy this book. I listened to the audiobook (, and it was narrated very well. The author did significant research into the history of dogs in warfare, and I found that interesting. It's hard to believe the US military has discovered then forgotten several times how incredibly valuable dogs can be in service to soldiers. Some trivia from the book: It costs about $50,000 to t ...more
May 18, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a big dog fan, especially larger working breeds and after seeing this book on 60 Minutes I ordered it immediately. It was very interesting reading about how the animals are selected and trained. The training begins even a few weeks after birth and is 100% positive reinforcement, no hiting or shocking the animals. I felt the first 3/4's of the book got a little slow and it was mainly focused on the training piece but as soon as he started sharing real life war stories that the dogs were invo ...more
Sarah Eiseman
Apr 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: military-memoir
Originally posted on

This year, I’ve been reading books on our military in an effort to better understand the challenges and experiences of those who serve. Today’s book was written by Mike Ritland, with Gary Brozek, and is about the training of Military Working Dogs (MWD). Ritland, a former Navy SEAL, became involved in training these dogs following his service, but it’s clear from reading the book that he would have been an excellent handler had he not found this calling so
Apr 13, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed about 30% of this book, the remainder was underwhelming. I had seen the story on 60 Minutes and wanted to be inspired and moved by the book, instead much of it was a 'how to train your dog' type of story. Plus, the author is likely an excellent dog trainer, but he's not much of a felt a little like amateur hour.
Feb 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I read this book in one sitting. Wow what a amazing book to read. Again, I just have to say my love of military books is a good one. However when I think of these types of books, I don't hardly ever think of the dogs fighting along side our military people. That is a shame. After reading this book and getting a really good idea of what these dogs do and the importance they play in helping our military forces win wars, I will always remember these dogs from now on. Also, when I thank our military ...more
Sep 04, 2013 rated it liked it
This book is really and infomercial about the herding breed Belgian Malinois that the author trains and declares the Navy Seal trident group prefers for their bite activity attack (reviere) and IED explosive detection (sook) skills that are typically rewarded with tennis ball tug / fetch play. I find that I prefer the long walk companionship of my favorite Sight Hounds (Greyhound, Pharaoh and Ibizan) who are not that much into tugging, fetching, scent or biting activities. The author certainly m ...more
Dec 06, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
This was 3 stars. The writing was kind of jumbled, but overall, I liked this one. I found the information kind of fascinating about how they search out dogs with the right personalities for their rigorous work with Navy SEALS. I liked the candid look at this process, so in that respect it felt honest. I was impressed with the way the handlers take care of their dogs. I'm glad that message came through loud and clear.....because the little raccoon story was appalling. The author was unapologetic ...more
Jun 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
We foster military working dog puppies for the breeding program at Lackland afb in San Antonio so I was especially interested in this book. Our puppies are not destined for Special Forces but are bred and trained to serve in all branches of the military all over the world. They too accompany our troops to war and much of the preparation and training is very similar to what this author described. Clearly the standards and requirements for Special Forces canines are higher in these programs just a ...more
Now, I'm not a dog lover, but I love reading about working dogs, especially military/police dogs. So I had high expectations from this book. Unfortunately, this book was a cure for my insomnia.

The biggest problem here is the prose and the lack of a coherent, linear story telling. The telling, oh my god, the telling was passive, repetitive and downright disjointed. For such an interesting's rather stunning. It didn't take long for my 'editor' hat to materialize and mentally start to r
SUSAN   *Nevertheless,she persisted*
Stopped reading at 10%.

I chose this book because I was interested in the training of Military Working Dogs and the invaluable impact they have on their handlers and country they serve. The author,at one time,trained Navy Seals,left the armed forces,and now trains Military working dogs.
I was prepared for a book that would ragale the readers with stories of the bravery and loyalty of these dogs and their handlers.
What I got instead,at 10%, was the author relating a story about an incident while he
From 'great book' to 'infomercial', previous reviewers have said all I can about 'Trident K9 Warriors' by Michael Ritland; I suppose, as a work of non-fiction, much of the books appeal will lie in the reader's points of interest.
I love dogs, admire working dogs and their trainers; politics aside, I respect the devotion and training of Special Forces personnel, and the military in general. I therefore had high hopes for this read, and the first page brought me right into the action.
Sadly, the wri
My Book Addiction and More MBA
TRIDENT K9 WARRIORS written by Mike Ritland with Gary Brozek. Read by Jeff Gurner is an interesting history/Military/Pets & Animal care/Afghan War. "My tale from the training ground to the battlefield with elite Navy Seal Canines". What an interesting and informative story of K9's and the man they work with in the Military field. These Military canines are highly intelligent,very motivated,brave, risk takers,smart, and very powerful. A wonderful history on Military working canines and the Na ...more
May 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Highly recommend! This book should appeal to a wide range of readers - those who love dogs and military history especially! The book is very interesting, especially in how he selects and trains the dogs. Every reader will have a greater appreciation for the training and dedication required of these dogs and handlers. Should be a must read for dog trainers and breeders of all types of dogs. It makes me realize how the exposure and handling of puppies from birth is so critical. This was a fascinat ...more
Dec 18, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I do not like this book, at all.

Here’s my take on this: It is written as a narrative but even though the author writes of his experiences it feels disconnected… I’m about 1/3 into this book (some 100 screens), but the way the author writes is not appealing to me at all. He doesn’t go into any great detail or background of his experiences during the war; it is very sterile. Almost like he had to watch what he wrote due to screeners… I don’t feel like I’m getting to know the author at all or his
Jennifer Nelson
Since I am a novice dog trainer, I'm always fascinated with books that feature amazingly trained dogs, especially if their skills are benefiting humans. This book delivered lots of fascinating details of military dogs' training and the amazing work that they do. I loved reading the dog stories and also gleaned a few tips and perspectives that will help me with my own dog training endeavors.

There were two things that bothered me about this book: the poor writing (this author simply cannot write)
Cheryl Sanders
May 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was AMAZING! I like the way the stories are told of each individual dog and handler and the history leading up to the need for these amazing K9's. I learned so much more than I expected about Seal teams and their SOF dogs. I am in awe of their handlers. Mike Ritland has done an amazing thing by starting the Warrior Dog Foundation, giving these retired MWD's and SOF K9's a place to call home. Thank you Mike Ritland and Gary Brozek for writing this wonderful and very informative book and ...more
This is a very interesting subject to me, yet unfortunately this is a very disjointed and disorganized presentation of it. The author could have used a really good editor, as the book as presented skips around all over the place, which left me emotionally detached from the dogs and their stories.

I do have a great deal of respect and admiration though for all our military soldiers, and for all of the canines that have supported our military. Dogs can be an unsung hero.
Kevin Goldsmith
May 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was an outstanding book. To begin with, the author is highly qualified to write about this: he was a SEAL team operator and trains Military Working Dogs (MWD), which is something he is very passionate about. This book gives MWD their proper recognition, the rigorous training they endure, and the amount of lives they save downrange due to their incredible olfactory perception. I definitely recommend this for people who love the military, dogs, and the Navy SEALs.
Karen & Gerard
Trident K9 Warriors by Mike Ritland with Gary Brozek tells the story of an elite group of dogs who go through special training to help our men fight the wars around the world. I especially enjoyed the stories of the battle where the dogs played a vital role. Of course, I liked the pictures of the dogs too! Some of the chapters that dealt with non-battle scenes I skimmed. To Mike Ritland and your band of brothers in arms, thank you for your service!
(Gerard's review)
Sep 25, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This is the exact same book as "Navy SEAL Dogs: My Tale of Training Canines for Combat". Perhaps a few changes in a couple of paragraphs, but marketed as another book. I pre-ordered this one with hopes it would have more personal and detailed stories about the K-9's, but it did not. It is the SAME book as previously listed. Save your money - buy only 1 of them.
Mark Rendahl
Aug 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing book. The amount of work these dogs do and number of lives they save is unquantifiable! You don't need to be a former K9 handler or someone who has served in the military to understand what the author writes. He describes everything in laymens terms making easy for any reader to understand what it takes to select, train and deploy these magnificent warriors!!
Feb 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Author and U.S. Navy SEAL,
Mike Ritland delivers a phenomenal, first time view at Our Nations Elite MWD's. He takes the reader into the world of U.S. Navy SEALs and their K9 Teams, showing the invaluable role that these K9 Warriors carry in War as well as the bond they have with their Handlers. Outstanding Content and a Definite Best Seller!!!!

Rancy Breece
Fascinating look at the recruitment, training, and deployment of elite canine warriors with the SEALS. Great stories from the field, gives a good understanding of the backgrounds of the soldier and dog, how they work together, with the unit, and the enormous contributions of the dog to the success of the mission.
Apr 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a person wanting to become a K9 officer of a police department, I really enjoyed this book. I liked how this whole book was focused on MWDs training. I somewhat wished there were more stories about the dogs in theatre, but over all it was a great book to read!
Sep 03, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Not my kind of book. It was, however, informative about the K9 dogs. Lots of training involved with dogs and with handlers. Once again proves dog = man's best friend. Gets my vote for using more dogs in warfare!
Erica Collins
Jan 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you have any interest in dog training, working dogs or military dog training, this is the book to read. It is well written, very informative and had many light and funny moments.
Melissa Edwards
May 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I want to meet this guy! This book was fantastic!
Read this book if you really like dogs. I mean REALLY like dogs. I found it interesting from a modern military perspective relating to another tool that is useful to the modern special operations forces. This was not what I expected, but then again, I'm not real sure what I expected from this book. The first half is about how the dogs are trained from being pups to selection to moving into combat. Then the author moves into first hand experiences of how the canines are used in action from a mode ...more
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“The capability they bring to the fight cannot be replicated by man or machine.”2” 0 likes
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