A BRITISH Army dog has been awarded the animal equivalent of the Victoria Cross.
Explosives sniffer dog Buster was presented with the People's Dispensary for Sick Animals Dickin medal for his bravery and devotion to duty in Iraq.
He received the award from Princess Alexandra, patron of the PDSA, accompanied by his handler Sgt Danny Morgan at a special ceremony at the Imperial War Museum in London.
The award is the highest decoration for gallantry that can be bestowed on any animal member of the British and Commonwealth forces.
Posing for photographers and TV cameras outside the museum with Sgt Morgan yesterday, Buster looked rather puzzled by all the attention.
The six-year-old Springer spaniel broke a resistance cell in Safwan, southern Iraq, when he discovered a hidden cache of weapons and explosives.
He is considered responsible for saving the lives of countless civilians and troops in an area where Huddersfield soldiers with the Duke of Wellington's Regiment were operating.
His handler Sgt Danny Morgan, 38, said: "It is such an honour, not just for Buster, for myself and the Royal Army Veterinary Corps, but also for all the dogs that were deployed in Iraq.
"He is really taking it like a team captain."
He added: "It is such an honour, not just for Buster, for myself and the Royal Army Veterinary Corps, but also for all the dogs that were deployed in Iraq."