While being deployed, Maj. Brian Dennis says there were many stray dogs scavenging for food at the border fort he was stationed at. The dogs acted as unofficial guard dogs, sounding the alarm if strangers approached the fort. But there was one dog in particular that caught his attention…Nubs, who got his nickname because he had his ears cut off (a practice used in dog fighting), always came around the fort and loved a good belly rub.
One day, when Dennis was out on patrol, he discovered a dog that he had come to know was badly hurt. Dennis was told the dog had been stabbed by an Iraqi soldier who had gotten mad at the dog and jabbed him with a big screwdriver. Dennis took the wounded dog in and nursed him back to health.
A while later, Dennis was assigned to a new fort, around 75 miles away. U.S. Marines and soldiers aren’t allowed to keep pets, so when Dennis headed out, he thought he was saying “goodbye” to the dog for good. Nubs chased after Dennis’ convoy until they rode out of sight.
Amazingly, a couple of days later, Dennis was inside the headquarters at the fort when a Marine ran in to tell him someone was outside to see him. Dennis thought the soldier was talking about a person, but when he found out it was Nubs he ran out to see him and the dog went crazy jumping on him, overjoyed to see his friend.
Dennis couldn’t believe it. Nubs had followed him 75 miles on foot! No one had any idea how the loyal dog had made the journey. Despite the rule against having pets, Dennis and his Marines built a doghouse for Nubs and let him stay. Unfortunately, a senior command received a complaint and Dennis was ordered to get rid of the dog. But Dennis knew that this time he could not say goodbye to his friend again and it was his turn to be a loyal friend.
Ultimately, with the help of friends, Dennis was able to raise the money needed to get Nubs shipped home. They received a lot of support from kind strangers and friends in the US and in Iraq, who all helped in getting Nubs and Dennis back together. Back at home, Dennis was inspired to write a book about his adventures with Nubs.