Now more than ever, you are needed to donate your old blankets, towels, and sheets to your local animal shelter. With financial cut-backs, repairs on shelters are often put off, so if it's drafty, the animals suffer. I know my shelter uses rags to stuff under doors. No kidding! Empty out those closets... this is your chance to get rid of stuff and do something useful!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Dogs Helping Humans, Again

In case you needed to be convinced that dogs and humans share a special bond, here is something that brings together two of my loves: Dogs and Soldiers. If you ever doubt or know someone who doubts that Americans rise to the challenge when it's needed, read this story from the Orlando Sentinel.

A man named Dave Cantara (who was a volunteer for the most excellent organization Patriot Guard Riders) formed a group called Patriot Rovers, and he professionally trains dogs to be therapy companions for soldiers suffering from post tramatic stress (I purposefully leave off the word disorder! It's their "new normal."). Kyle Evans, Purple Heart Recipient and Iraq War Veteran, lives in Orlando, Florida with his family and Mr. Cantara trains his dogs in North Carolina. None other than Pilots N Paws flew Marley (a dog trained by Mr. Cantara) to meet his new family.

In the span of one article, three citizen led and run organizations have risen to the challenge before them.
Oh, and Marley was a rescued dog!

(Photo credit:  Jacob Langston, Orlando Sentinel / June 8, 2011 )
Army veteran Kyle Evans stands with his family as he watches "Marley" walk toward them at the Orando Executive Airport on Wednesday afternoon, June 8, 2011. He received the golden retriever service dog from Carolina Patriot Rovers, Inc. The organization provides service dogs to veterans diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. (Jacob Langston/Orlando Sentinel)


"I knew this could be an alternative way to help these soldiers," Cantara said. "This program provides hope for soldiers like Kyle and other wounded warriors. The dogs are a calming influence at their side. They give the constant unconditional love and reassurance the soldiers need."