Do military dogs have titanium teeth?

Posted by Lydia Leavitt

Perusing the Google News headlines I came across the usual articles about mobile technology, websites, and apps, until I saw a headline that stood out: "Military dogs with titanium teeth take down Osama Bin Laden."

Titanium Teeth?! How awesome. Of course, I clicked it.

The Daily asserts that a military dog accompanying the U.S. Navy SEALS Team 6 on the mission to off Osama bin Laden was the one responsible for actually taking him out. Making the story even more interesting, this dog was reported to have extra scary titanium teeth.

Yes, according to The Daily, the dogs have "razor sharp teeth made from titanium, their body armor can withstand clouds of hot shrapnel, and they’ve been trained to wear oxygen masks for high-altitude skydives into enemy territory...[A bite] is like being stabbed four times at once with a bone crusher."

It’s like a hybrid zombie dog made of 100% pure awesomness!

Wired.com promptly popped my bubble of forming my own titanium-toothed dog army when it reported that dogs with metal teeth actually have something wrong with them. 

To obtain this intel, Wired turned to dog trainers familiar with German Sheperds and Belgian Malinois commonly used in army missions.

"It would not be possible for them to use titanium teeth to make them even more aggressive," says Jeff Franklin, owner of Cobra Canine in Virginia Beach.

"They’re not as stable as a regular tooth would be, and they’re much more likely to come out" during a biting.

The only reason to use titanium teeth? "If a dog breaks a tooth … it’s the same as a crown for a human."

Jeff Franklin and his company Cobra Canine are best known for their work with the U.S. Special Operations Command to train military dogs for Naval Special Warfare Group 2 as well as DevGru or Team 6.

For a dog to be eligible for one of these special units, it’s required that "All four canine teeth must be present and must not be weakened by notching, enamel hyperplasia or abnormal, excessive wear."

Franklin added, "It’s a detriment, not a help." Womp, womp.

Guess that means these doggies won’t have titanium grills anytime in the near future.