Pets and estate planning

Older woman with dog

What happens if you die before your cat or dog? It's a question being addressed increasingly as more people are including pets in their estate planning. Pets are property In the eyes of the law pets are property. But ask any pet guardian - otherwise known as a pet  owner - if Fido or Fluffy is on equal footing with their other possessions and most will say 'no.' Increasingly, dogs, cats and other companion animals are the subject of bitter custody fights when couples divorce, and are gaining the upper paw when it comes to estate planning. While the law classifies pets as property, it does … [Read more...]

Little dogs bring big changes to veterans’ lives

Patriots in their own words

They say it's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog. We'd suggest it's something slightly different: it's the size of the heart in the dog. So it is with two little dogs that are bringing big changes to the lives of the veterans who gave them a second chance at life. Vietnam veteran finally gets a 'thank you' Bob is a Vietnam Army veteran who served during a period in our nation's history when veterans symbolized a deeply unpopular war. There were no parades, no jubilant welcomes home, no thanks for a job well done. Their return was unceremonious at best … [Read more...]

Navy war veteran finds a real buddy in homeless dog

Buddy and Bill on a boat

This is the story of a Navy war veteran who finds a buddy, literally, in the form of a homeless shelter dog. bud-dy (noun): a good friend, companion or partner; a comrade. Buddy is truly the perfect name for the orphaned two year-old cockapoo who honorably adopted Bill, a Navy veteran, during a trip to Lollypop Farm in May 2011. Let’s be clear: Buddy chose Bill, not the other way around. Bill was merely at the Rochester, New York animal shelter to appease his wife, Michelle, who had been combing internet websites and nearby shelters for a furry companion to adopt. “We had talked about … [Read more...]

Abandonment unites airman and shelter dog

Ben and Siren

Veterans and service members who honorably adopt shelter pets through our program often speak about the empathy they have for their last-chance dog or cat. Many feel isolated, lonely and unwanted, and tell us how they can relate to the animals they ultimately save. Ben and Siren formed a strong bond through the abandonment they each experienced in their lives. Ben is a Staff Sargeant in the Air Force. Stationed at Langley Air Force Base (AFB) for six years, he works the stealth coatings for the F-22. Like many military personnel, Ben serves where the military needs him; throughout his career … [Read more...]

“Pathetic-looking” rescue dog saves disabled veteran from depression

Frank and Gus

When depression took its toll on a disabled Vietnam veteran whose dog had just died, he knew it was time to save another last-chance rescue dog. In the process, he saved himself. Born in Chicago, Frank was a toddler when his family moved to the San Francisco Bay Area. In 1973, he relocated to San Diego, a place where he loves to live and volunteer. In 1974, Frank joined the Navy reserves as a cryptology and radar specialist. He spent 20 months on an aircraft carrier off the Vietnam coast and the remainder of his enlistment as assistant to an admiral in Miramar, California. “I never drilled … [Read more...]

Last chance to make your 2011 donation

Mario Kona live serve love

If you haven't already included Pets for Patriots in your year-end giving plans, there's still a few hours left! In addition to the tax benefits of contributing to our cause, your gift will support veteran and service members of the United States military whose lives are forever changed through companion pet adoption. Your support of Pets for Patriots helps fund our work that provides: Direct financial support to military members towards the purchase of pet food and other essentials Surrender prevention for last-chance pets adopted through our program by helping to make pet adoption … [Read more...]

Changing lives coast to coast

Jacob, Sophie and family

When I wrote to you earlier this week I told you that we were changing lives coast to coast and had 60 honorable adoptions to celebrate. That number is now 62, and will likely grow in the coming days as a record number of veterans and service members are joining our program to give a last-chance pet a second chance at life. Since my earlier message, we had two adoptions that highight our growing national footprint. In upstate New York, Leland, a Navy veteran, honorably adopted an adult cat named Cow (yes, Cow!). On the other coast, a formerly stray Boxer mix named Sophie was saved by a … [Read more...]

Last-chance pets transform veterans’ lives

Kip & Céilidh

As 2011 draws to a close, we celebrate the 60 last-chance pets who are transforming the lives of veterans and service members in need. They're the adult dogs and cats, large dogs and special needs pets who faced near-certain death at a shelter if not adopted. Today, because of our organization and your support, they have a second chance at life. The human side of this story is no less dramatic. Sixty heroes from virtually every generational conflict: World War II, Vietnam, Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan. Men and women who have defended the cause of freedom in Bosnia, Lebanon, Grenada and countless … [Read more...]

Retired disabled Army dog needs help to walk again

Koady and Santo

Santo is a disabled, retired bomb-sniffing dog recently discharged from the Army and barely able to use his hind legs. His handler and now owner is a three-tour combat veteran of both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars who, in spite of being recently discharged and currently unemployed, adopted the military working dog (MWD) when he learned that he was going to be killed. Koady, his then-handler and now owner, knows that Santo's keen nose saved the lives of many of his fellow soldiers - including his own. Santo's problems starting during his tour in Afghanistan. He was eventually returned to the … [Read more...]

WWII Marine veteran fearless about pet adoption and life

Bee and Laddie

When the Marines talk about the few and the proud, they obviously had Bee, a WWII veteran in mind. Bee is 88 years young as of this writing and adopted an adult shelter dog who stole her heart. In 1945, Bee enlisted in the Marine Corps and remained in service until the war was over. Because women were not allowed overseas, she worked for a warrant officer as a shipping receiver in Quantico, where the Officers Training Camp was located. Boot camp remains a powerful memory of that time in her life. “It was an unusual choice for women to enlist, but I did it because I was bound and determined. … [Read more...]

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