We love sharing videos of soldiers coming home to their pets. It happens so often that we get to post a video nearly every day of such a reunion. But what about service dogs who are helping the military? Rarely do we get to share videos of them reuniting with the men and women of the military with whom they’ve been through so much. And despite the remarkable efforts of the U.S. Air Force, too many dogs are left behind on foreign soil. The problem is that if dogs are retired overseas, they become civilians and are no longer qualified to travel home on military vehicles – creating an often insurmountable barrier to getting them home to the ones who care for them most. That is, until now.
Earlier this month the U.S. Senate followed the House of Representatives in passing the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) with language supported by American Humane Association mandating that America’s heroic military working dogs will be returned to U.S. soil upon retirement, and that their human handlers and their families will be given first right of adoption. The language was introduced in the House by Congressman Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ) and the Senate by Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO).
“Today, America’s military working dogs are one step closer to being guaranteed treatment as the heroes they are,” said Dr. Robin Ganzert, American Humane Association president and CEO. “Thank you to Congressman LoBiondo, Senator McCaskill and all our friends in the House and Senate who are championing the cause of military dogs and their handlers. We now urge the President to sign this long-overdue measure into law. We believe ALL our veterans – two-footed and four-footed – should come back to a hero’s welcome, a loving, forever home, and the happy, healthy, and dignified retirement they so deserve after a lifetime of service to their country. That hope is now within sight of becoming a reality.”
The AHA is urging everyone to get involved. You can do this by calling or writing to a member of Congress and asking them to pass the final version of the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act. Get out there and spread the word on social media too! You can make a difference!
To learn more about American Humane Association please visit www.AmericanHumane.org.