Russia’s ruthless Spetsnaz soldiers kill wild dogs with shovels during training

President Vladimir Putin may be having a hard time in his invasion of Ukraine, but could yet call on some of the most fearsome shock troops in the world to turn the tide in his favour – Russia's elite and bloodthirsty Spetsnaz units.

The Spetnaz are Russia's special forces and are currently numbered at around 15,000 split between army and naval units.

The soldiers are as elite as they come and all have undergone a medieval training program with a 90% attrition rate to get where they are.

Spetsnaz training is widely considered to be the toughest in the world and is designed to put recruits through more pain than they've ever been through before.

In order to qualify for the Spetsnaz, recruits must be trained up in a variety of modern (and not so modern) warfare skills.

These include explosives training, marksmanship, counter-terrorism, brutal hand-to-hand combat and even underwater fighting.

But unlike the special forces training undertaken by members of the British army, Spetsnaz training is incredibly volatile and frequently unsafe.

Recruits are forced to undertake gruelling assault courses while instructors fire on them with live ammunition.

Meanwhile, in martial arts classes, Russian forces practise their manoeuvres with real knives to attain perfect military composure.

While recruits are in the training program, they are conditioned to take as much pain as possible with some reports suggesting that recruits are even made to wrestle wild dogs.

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One former Soviet officer claimed that even when the recruits weren't training they were beaten with belts and forced to sleep outside or in toilets.

But most infamously, a key requirement of the training program has long been rumoured to be shovel warfare.

This is essentially what it sounds like, in order to join the Russian Spetnaz, you should be able to demonstrate your ability to kill someone with just a shovel.

According to the Infographic's Show, a notorious part of the training sees a recruit locked in a room with a rabid dog armed only with their shovel.

As they say in the Spetsnaz: "You make the man a weapon."

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