Born in Quad Cities, Iowa, Jack Wheeler was a former star collegiate football player whose budding career was destroyed by an untimely injury. He dropped out of college after this, disheartened and unable to afford his course. After this, he joined the Marine Corps, serving a tour of duty. He returned home, and went back to college education, attending night classes. He met a woman called Claire Smith and they became engaged. He became a vigilante after his fiance was murdered by the mafia. She did not tell him her real surname was Carmonti, and that she was the daughter of a recently slain mob boss. He would continue to run his auto garage to support himself, but at night he would pursue and kill criminals. He would go on to fight and kill domestic terrorists, urban criminals and mafia. He wears an old football jersey with a symbol of a laughing dog on it as his colors.
Wild Dog first appeared in his own mini-series Wild Dog dated September 1987, from writer Max Allan Collins and the art team of Terry Beatty and Dick Giordano.
According to Terry Beatty, initial rejected names were "Machine", "Commando", "Mad Dog" and finally "Red Dog" which was only changed due to existence of a G.I. Joe action figure of the same name.
He was most likely an attempt to capture some of the success that was had by Marvel's The Punisher.
In the alternate timeline created when Booster Gold saved Ted Kord from being shot, Wild Dog is one of the heroes recruited by Green Arrow and Hawkman to stop Maxwell Lord. He is killed when Maxwell Lord uses his mind control powers to make Wild Dog shoot Pantha and then himself.
Powers and Abilities
Wild Dog is a superb athlete and is highly skilled at hand to hand combat. Due to his Marine background, he is versatile with all types of weaponry. He has military training, and was considered an excellent soldier. He wears a lightweight body armor underneath his t-shirt, along with a pair of stun gloves which can knock a person out with a touch. He also wears a utility belt that holds, among other things, hand weapons and extra ammunition.
Weapons: Jatimatic SMG, Electric Shock Gloves.