Vietnam War Dog MarcianPrint Page Print this page

Marcian : 27-April-2011
Marcian : 27-April-2011
Photographs supplied by Roger Johnson

The Plaque commemorates Marcian, a tracker dog used in the Vietnam War.

Marcian arrived in South Vietnam in August 1970 and served with 4RAR and 3RAR. His handler was Private Pat Dawes. He was highly rated as a fast and obedient dog, who was proficient at keeping a track scent. Marcian was retired from 4RAR in November 1971 and was adopted by the Consul General at the British Embassy in Saigon. 

In Vietnam, there were two black Labrador tracker dogs attached to each Australian battalion. An integral part of a small team of 6 soldiers, they were working dogs rather than pets, which made the bond between the animals and their handlers that much stronger. The men relied on them to locate the enemy and to prevent them walking into ambushes and enemy booby traps. They entrusted their lives to the tracker dogs. A handler’s dog was ‘his best mate’, so it was heart-breaking for the handlers to have to part with their dogs when they finished their tour of duty in Vietnam.

The dogs had a 3 year tour of duty, unlike their handlers who usually spent one year there. Australian quarantine laws prohibited the dogs from returning home with their handlers. In 1968 the Army decided that the dogs would be kept in the battalion as ‘reserves’ when they finished their ‘active service’. They were then to be passed on as pets to European or Australian families living in Saigon.



Address:Blanche Terrace, Moonta, 5558
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -34.068988
Long: 137.592972
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:Culture


Front Inscription

Vietnam War Dog

Served South Vietnam 1967-71
with the Royal
Australian Regiment

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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