Where does a friendly little beagle that adores frolicking on the beach with her human companions go when both her owners get deployed—and as a result, is left with out a family and home for the next six months?
For sun-and-surf-loving Bella, Dogs on Deployment found a foster home right near her home in Florida. “This pretty little girl will be here in just a couple of days,” announced her foster mother on DoD’s Facebook page. “We are proud to be her DOD boarder! Meet and greet went well, and she is going to have a blast…lots of fun at beach! So happy we get to help!”
Even a quick scroll down Dogs on Deployment’s Facebook page makes clear the constant demand for temporary homes for pets of deployed service members. DoD recruits volunteer boarders near every major military base in the United States to offer temporary homes for service members’ furry family members within a 50-mile radius of whatever base soldiers find themselves stationed at or deploying from.
While the emphasis this week during National Pet Week and Be Kind to Animals Week usually stays firmly on the pets, it is the owners facing the risk of losing their dogs in the process of serving their country who benefit from Dogs on Deployment’s compassionate camaraderie.
The benefits of this program were brought to light when Dogs on Deployment recently reunited a soldier with her dog on The Queen Latifah Show.
Relinquishing a beloved pet can be a devastating morale-buster to a deploying soldier. Dogs on Deployment aims to raise awareness of this stressor up the chain of command; building a base of support with a push for annual, military-wide pet responsibility training. “We want pets to be considered part of the family by military regulations, not disposable objects,” state DoD’s objectives.
Much as PenFed offers service members emergency assistance via the PenFed Foundation, Dogs on Deployment throws out a lifeline in its own niche through financial help with pet care costs before and during deployments. The Pet Chit Program provides financial assistance to get military pets spayed/neutered, vaccinated, and microchipped.
Show your support!
Give heart to those who serve by protecting their furry family members. You can support Dogs on Deployment’s mission with a tax-exempt donation that helps DoD volunteer boarders willing to care for military pets and promote owner responsibility.