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...]

Navy retiree living the life of Riley

Riley and AJ

For one Navy retiree, the expression "living the life of Riley" is life imitating art, but with a twist. After traveling the world and then retiring from the Navy in 2010, AJ was happy to find a forever home for his family in an old farmstead in upstate New York. “I served for 22 years; retired as a Commander. My service experiences included tours on surface warships, in staff positions in Washington D.C., and an overseas tour in Cairo, Egypt.” That tour in Cairo proved to be AJ’s most memorable experience while serving in the Navy, as he took on the challenge of residing there with his … [Read more...]

From Afghanistan veterans, with love: Molly’s story

Jacqueline, Mike and Molly

From Florida to the war in Afghanistan, this is the story of two veterans who fell in love - with each other and with a lovable mutt named Molly. From Afghanistan, with love Mike and I both serve in the Florida Army National Guard together and met while deployed to Afghanistan in 2005. We later began dating after returning home, and four short years later and another deployment, we finally got married. Unfortunately, a few months after, Charlie - Mikes’ adoring Lab who had anxiously awaited his return after three deployments - sadly passed away after 12 faithful years. After a few months … [Read more...]

Senior dog chooses Navy veteran as his buddy

Buddy on the run

For one senior shelter dog and the Navy veteran who adopted him, the name “Buddy” says it all. James served in the United States Navy during the Vietnam War as a hull technician, a combination of firefighter and welder. Currently on disability retirement, he’s a proud lifetime member of the Disabled American Veterans, the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. The simple pleasures, plus one The Vietnam veteran enjoys the simple pleasures in life, like relaxing in front of the television to watch his favorite shows, such as NCIS and The Big Bang Theory, as well as movies. But … [Read more...]

Anchors away for Navy couple and rescued pitbull

Wes, Vic and Bowser

It's anchors away for a Navy husband-and-wife team and their rescued pitbull, Bowser.  Wes is a public affairs officer with the Navy reserves and his wife, Victoria - who goes by Vic - a Navy nurse. Shortly after celebrating their first wedding anniversary and with the prospect of children many years down the road, the couple decided to adopt a dog because they "wanted a companion to love and to love us back."  From Texas to Virginia, with love Both Wes and Vic came from Texas, but that's about the only similarity in their nascent military careers. Wes was commissioned from the University … [Read more...]

Spirited cat wins heart of lonely Air Force veteran

Harry and Ed

A previously abused, but spirited cat finds his way into the heart and home of a lonely Air Force veteran. Not exactly a scene from When Harry Met Sally, but more like When Harry Met... Ed. Pets for Patriots member Ed was easily won over by Harry, a spirited Maine Coon, during their first meeting. Harry, on the other hand, took a little longer to come around. But in a patient and loving environment, the Air Force veteran who had served in Vietnam and elsewhere internationally, soon became the world to the homeless feline. Air Force veteran meets scaredy cat The veteran and his daughter … [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...]

PTSD veteran saved by once-abused one-eyed dog

Matthew and Eli

For one veteran coping with PTSD and depression, his saving grace came in the form of a one-eyed dog who had been previously abused. This is his story, in his own words. *** My name is Matthew Goschke; I'm born and raised in Rochester, New York. I've lived here my whole life besides my experiences with the military. I currently run security for the City of Rochester, loss prevention for The Home Depot and am pursuing my paramedic degree. After my military service I found integrating back into civilian life a lot more difficult then I had anticipated. Light at the end of a "very dark" … [Read more...]

Navy family sails high with rescued dog at helm

Macy and Tyler

Deployment can be tough on Navy and other military families, but a companion pet can make for smoother sailing. This is the experience of one Pets for Patriots adopter who decided to adopt a shelter dog to give his wife comfort when he deploys out to sea. Tyler is a 23 year-old active duty member of the United States Navy. He joined the service six years ago and has been stationed in San Diego on the USS Peleliu LHA-5, an amphibious assault ship. He served three deployments, one humanitarian mission and two West Pacific missions, earning a Navy Achievement Medal during his second … [Read more...]

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