Pets & Vets

Pets and Vets is a Signature Program of that works with groups around the country to support, sustain, and develop services to improve the lives of veterans, their families, and their pets.

Pets & Vets Focus Areas

Throughout our work with veterans, we began to notice a critical connection to animals—to Military War Dogs, Military Contractor Dogs, and as a way to bring comfort to veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). We witnessed firsthand how much veterans benefit from companion animals, and how much these animals benefit from a chance at a loving forever home and a family on which to deliver their unconditional love. With a desire to meet these needs, we started our Pets & Vets Signature Program.

Focus Areas

Mental health

Emotional support, companion and service dog support

Military War Dogs and Military Contractor Dogs transport and veterinary support

Transport support for deployed military personnel to save pets from field operations internationally

Protecting veteran humans and dogs

Military War Dogs adoption

Military War Dogs care and enrichment

Pet foster care for deployed military

Pet foster care for retired military with war injuries

Free adoption and benefits for ALL veterans

Providing companion and assistance animals for veterans

Examples of Our Work

Kara and Tank
An Air Force veteran, Kara, suffered crippling isolation after returning from Afghanistan until an adopted dog named Tank helped her reclaim her life. Kara has always cared for others. During her deployment to Afghanistan, she volunteered in the emergency room at Bagram Air Base, witnessing firsthand the teamwork involved in caring for wounded service members. Unknown to her at the time, she would return to civilian life with such profound emotional trauma that many days she could barely get out of bed. Her world had become a crippling isolation that consumed her.

Counseling and medication failed to relieve Kara’s emotional pain. Having experienced the mood-enhancing benefits of two dogs she had early in her recovery, she decided to look for a shelter dog she could train to be more sensitive to her psychological needs. Tank was an adult German Shorthaired Pointed who had his own challenges socializing with others. In so many ways, he was the perfect fit for Kara; as she worked with Tank to overcome his anxieties, she became less anxious and more open to the world around her. “Tank opened my life back up,” Kara said, adding that before adopting him, even a trip to the grocery store was terrifying and exhausting.

Bazy and Marine Corporal Hill
Bazy and Marine Corporal Hill deployed to Afghanistan for a tour of duty. The relationship between a military dog and its handler begins at the training school and continues until one or the other is reassigned. Hill said the bond is strengthened during deployments, as Bazy literally slept beside him when they were in Afghanistan. Bazy’s transport costs were funded by support from through MissionK9 Rescue, and now these two can remain a team.