Marine Corps Pvt. Smedley Butler - it's a hefty name for a little dog. But Smedley has big shoes (or paws) to fill. The 14-week-old English bulldog puppy is currently training to become MCRD San Diego's newest mascot.
Stars and Stripes reports Smedley is replacing Belleau Wood, who has retired to Temecula.
Smedley lives at the recruit depot with his handler, Cpl. Tyler Viglione, and the two bunk together in the barracks, which, according to Viglione, is...
“...a bit of a learning experience for both of us.”
During the day, Smedley's training includes everything from basic doggy tasks (sit, stay, DON'T lift your leg there) to learning how to salute, which will come in handy for Smedley's future role as mascot:
Once he graduates from recruit training and becomes a private first class, Smedley will perform at weekly graduation ceremonies and also attend recruiting and community relations events like Padres and Chargers games and adopt-a-school events.
There are only three official Marine Corps mascots, and Smedley will become one of them. The other two are Legend, the MCRD Parris Island mascot, and the big dog of the group: Chesty XIV, who serves as Marine Barracks Washington's mascot.
You want to see Smedley in action, don't you? Well, KFMB-TV journalist Jeff Zevely hung out with the pup, and put together this adorable report: