Four-tour combat veteran rejoins life with help of canine battle buddy

Adam and Griz snow

Combat veterans will tell you how hard it can be to ease back into civilian life after a career in the military. Adam knew only too well; as a multiple tour combat veteran, he was about to make his fourth transition with the help of a shelter dog named Griz. First 9/11, then Iraq Adam has been devoted to serving his country for most of his adult life. The day he graduated from high school in 1999, he left for the United States Marine Corps Boot Camp at Parris Island, South Carolina. After basic training he attended the United States Marine Corps School of Infantry at Camp … [Read more...]

Dog lover makes room in his heart for a cat named Callie

Mark and Callie

A dual Marine-Army veteran  and dog lover learned that he had a soft spot for, of all things, a rescued Calico cat. The Vietnam-era Devil Dog - a term associated with the Marines since WWI for their legendary bravado in battle - found joy with the finicky feline, who's proving to have a personality as resilient as her savior. After serving in the Marine Corps from 1973 to 1975 and then the next eight years in the Army as a heavy–wheel vehicle mechanic, Mark separated from service with the rank of sergeant first class. The disabled veteran always fancied himself a dog person, but that all … [Read more...]

Once-neglected dog finds true love with Marine family

Magoo on bed

Magoo entered a Michigan animal shelter neglected, severely underweight and flea-ridden, but left as a 130-pound new best friend to a Marine veteran. The seven year-old Newfoundland mix now has a second chance at life and a new family to call his own. Peter served in the Marine Corps as a Weather Observer with MWSS-373, Marine Wing Support Squadron, an aviation ground support unit at Marine Corps Air Station in Miramar, California. Early in 2003 he deployed in support of both Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom. His service took him to both Kuwait and Iraq, which … [Read more...]

A letter of thanks for three lives transformed

Stephanie and Fly

This letter of thanks is from Stephanie, a Marine Corps veteran and Pets for Patriots member, to our founder and executive director, Beth Zimmerman. Sometimes all it takes is a dog to forever transform the lives of those around her.  Hi Beth, I know I've thanked you plenty over the phone, but wanted to write you so that anytime your job gets difficult you can read this and have some comfort in knowing that you've greatly affected three lives - [starting with] the life of our new dog, Fly, an eight month-old Border Collie that was rescued by your partner in Utah, Canines With a … [Read more...]

Marine bulldog meets shelter hound dog

Sango and Eric

The English Bulldog became the Marine's unofficial mascot following World War I, after German reporters referred to Marines as Devil Dogs. This story, however, is about a real life Marine veteran and the hound dog whose life he saved. Tough guy with a kind heart Eric served eight years in the United States Marine Corps in field artillery, during which he served in California and Okinawa, Japan. Although tenacious and tough like all Marines, he had a soft spot for rescue dogs. "It's hard to just watch them with their big puppy eyes looking at you saying, "Take me home; I will be good." A … [Read more...]

Marine veteran finds two-pound dog worth her weight in gold

Karen and Chloe

For one Marine veteran, a scrappy little puppy mill dog destined for death was worth saving – and worth her weight in gold. Chloe, a seven year-old Chihuahua, has truly been through the mill. The two-pound dog was abandoned after doing time in a puppy mill, her reproductive organs over used, worn out and infected. She was a pitiful sight when Karen, a U.S. Marine veteran, noticed the rag-tag dog at the Lake City Columbia County Humane Society in Lake City, Florida. “She was so timid and fragile; she looked scared to death,” recalls Karen, who was stationed at Marine Corps Base Quantico in … [Read more...]

Rescued dog eases burden of Marine combat veteran

Jason and Javi Lynn

Sometimes all it takes is a rescued dog to ease the invisible, but heavy burden carried by our combat veterans. This is one such story from Jason, a dual Army and Marine veteran, and how his rescued dog changed his life for the better. *** From battlefield to homefront I have been a dog lover all of my life. I remember almost every dog that ever followed me home from my paper route as a kid to the brave K-9 Marines I crossed paths with in Afghanistan. I currently live in Utah and do marketing for a large physician pain practice. I do have to say: I am a bit of a private person and hope … [Read more...]

Marine adopts adult dog to start his family

Wesley and Sass doing homework

An adult dog reminds one Marine of his boyhood, and a family tradition is reborn with the help of Pets for Patriots. “I always had a dog growing up,” says Wesley, a Marine Reservist living in upstate New York. “When I returned home from deployment and got married, I decided it was time to restart that tradition.” He and his wife, Paige, hope to have kids one day. Wesley believes it’s important for his children to have the same experience that he had growing up by having pets around the house.  Wesley served six years with the U.S. Marine Corps. Stationed in Syracuse, New York, he was … [Read more...]

Marine fights to adopt disabled MWD and Iraq war partner

Megan and Rex

A Marine and a disabled MWD (military war dog) are in the fight of their lives: trying to spend their lives together  as friends after fighting side by side in Iraq. Now Megan Leavey and Rex have some power in their corner.  Influential New York State Senator Chuck Schumer has already written a letter to the secretary of the Air Force, which is responsible for all training and adoptions of MWDs at Lackland Air Force Base. We hope to do our part by creating more awareness of Megan's efforts to give Rex, her battle buddy and savior, the life he deserves in a loving home. Both suffered serious … [Read more...]

Dogs give new life to disabled veteran and military spouse

Tank Scout and dad

 This is a story shared with us by a disabled veteran and military spouse whose two dogs, Tank and Scout, give her a renewed sense of purpose in life. Our thanks to Misty her service and for sharing her experiences with us. We wish her husband a safe and speedy return home and thank him for his continued service as well. ***** I am disabled veteran and wife of a Staff Sergeant (SSG) in the Army who is currently deployed in Afghanistan. My health has not been good and there is only one thing that makes me want to face each day:  the love my dogs give me and my love for them. Pets can truly be … [Read more...]