Military deployment and your pets

soldier and dog

So you received your military deployment orders and don’t know what to do with your dog or cat. At Pets for Patriots, we get calls every week from service members who are distraught at the prospect of parting with their beloved animals. Fortunately there are alternatives to relinquishing your four-legged family member to the local pound.  Friends and family Unmarried, deploying service members often turn to a loved one, parent or friend. But the ties that bind don’t always translate into the best situation for your pet, or the person entrusted with its care. Ask yourself:  -       Is this … [Read more...]

Rescued dog rescues Vietnam veteran with PTSD

Picture of Bob and rescued dog Trust

Robert (Bob) Quimby didn't know anything about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). He didn't know he was affected by what he had seen in Vietnam at all - until one day his boss asked about his combat experiences: "I walked back to my desk and had my first flashback because that wall that had been built up broke down." In 1987, after 13 years working at the Department of Veterans Affairs, Bob resigned and the VA labeled him unemployable. Bob - a Vietnam veteran and Purple Heart recipient - says he cried the first time he heard that word. Bob was diagnosed with PTSD in 1989 and has lived … [Read more...]

Veterans give last chance pets new lease on life

Pat and Shirley family photo

Since the start of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, many charitable organizations have launched to help returning veterans adjust to their post-deployment lives. We salute any group that’s dedicated to our men and women in service, and agree that veterans coming home from these conflicts warrant our full support. In fact, every one of our nearly 23 million veterans is equally deserving of our nation’s gratitude, yet some find themselves forgotten. No parades, no special programs, no new treatments for old wounds. We hear this most from Vietnam era veterans, many of whom continue to feel … [Read more...]

‘Hot dog’ rescues Navy veteran

Foy-and-General-Sam

This story is from Foy, a Navy veteran and member Patriot living in Florida and his newly adopted 5-year old dog, Sam. This match was made through our partner, Lake City Humane Society. Over the years, during my childhood life and being stationed in many places throughout the United States, Europe and the Middle East, I had the opportunity to adopt and raise several dogs and cats. Each one had a very special place in my heart and brought joy to our family. Now that my family is gone away from home, I started feeling alone. I thought about having a pet for two years after retiring from the … [Read more...]

Disabled veteran and shelter mutt save each other

Bobby and Red

Bobby, a disabled Army veteran in Florida, wrote this letter to our founder. This match was made through our partner, Lake City Humane Society. Dear Beth, I greatly appreciate your efforts and concerns for shelter animals and veterans. The benefits all around go way past even the elements you have listed. When I met Mr. Red, it was about 30 days after having had two operations. No big combat story, just things we confront in life. To add to the stress of the operations (actually 20 days in between), I lost my best friend. Two days after the first operation, Mr. Pooh, my husky of 14 years, … [Read more...]

Shelter dog gets fresh start with disabled veteran

Red-On-Red

We received this letter from Red, a shelter dog in Florida recently adopted through our program by a disabled Army veteran. Hi! My name is Red. I'm a mixed breed Golden Retriever/Labrador and everyone says I am a big boy. I am really just a puppy at 11 months old. I have a very loving personality and have plenty of kisses (slurps!) for everyone. While I am growing up, I want to go to obedience school and become certified as a companion dog so that I can watch out for Ms. Bobby, a hearing impaired veteran. She lost about half her hearing while working around cargo jets. Also, with proper … [Read more...]

Senior Tales: All About Odie

Odie

Odie is an older Jack Russell Terrier who has a true rags-to-riches story. He is a rescue dog and his first family could no longer afford to care for him since they were losing their home. Odie is about 9 to 10 years old and has permanent eye dryness, making it very difficult for him to see. Because of this, he was not eligible to be taken in by a shelter. He was on his way to the pound when my Dad heard about Odie's situation and called me, because he knew I was in the market to adopt a dog soon. Love at first sight Odie had to be adopted immediately in order to avoid almost certain death. … [Read more...]

Veteran’s dying wish fulfilled: a home for Gizmo

blog dog high res

  By now you probably know the twists and turns of Gizmo, the little Shih Tzu dog pictured above, left homeless when his only family - an elderly, dying Korean War veteran -  asked us to fulfill his dying wish. In spite of a tremendous and frantic effort to find the dog a new home while his current caretaker was still alive, the veteran died without knowing where his beloved companion would end up. Many people contacted us and applied to our shelter partner, Rancho Coastal Humane Society, to give Gizmo a new leash on life. Each had their own stories, and reasons why they would be the … [Read more...]