This three-legged decorated war hero had one leg lost to surgery after taking four rounds from an AK-47.
Bad. Mother. Fucker.
Those eyes say “Pretend to throw the tennis ball. I dare you to only pretend.”
I think those eyes say a lot more than that. He’s seen more than I ever will, done more than I’ll ever do, and his war will never be over.
He’s got Ranger scrolls on his collar. That dog is a god damn hero.
I just noticed the Purple Heart and that Scroll.
Wow. Just wow.
The picture alone, in all it’s detail says a lot of things. god damn.
I can’t not reblog this dog… his you
Eyes say so much
I’ve never seen a dog with such a face like that. Like an old man who went to war and if you ask him about he just stiffens up and face turns to stone.
Layka is a lady dog. Let’s remember that.
Now, it’s an understandable problem - our socialization instantly encourages us to see this rugged, sleek, military animal as a male. Three-legged hero dog with military decorations and stern-appearing eyes? TOTALLY A DUDE DOG, JUST LOOK AT HIM. It’s a programmed response, and nothing to be ashamed of - let’s just be accurate and note that Layka’s a female.
I’ve highlighted all the reblogs above where Layka is described as a hero, an old man, with male pronouns - rather than the fierce, charming heroine she is. It’s kind of a teachable moment: how does an image of an animal, displaying absolutely no secondary sex characteristics, instantly give us these fictional headcanons about its gender and gender performance? It’s an impressive demonstration of our ability to translate body language.
The photographer who took this compelling shot noted that Layka’s playful, bouncy energy made it nearly impossible for him to get a shot with her mouth closed! He ended up having to stop using the tennis ball he was using to get her attention, because it made her too excited and smiley. Based on the photos below, I think she’d have quite a sense of humor about the “where’s the tennis ball?” game!
Of course, the photographer did end up connecting with a fundamental aspect of Layka’s nature in the cover photo; her serious, soldier side. But that’s not all the animal is. Does the dog in the unused shots still resemble an “old man?” Is the dog in the unused shots male or female? Is it still a hero with its tongue out? Is it still admirable without a “face like stone?”
This is what I mean when I say that we have to examine the lenses of culture and society that we are always, always looking through when we talk about science biology.