April 2015
Homeplace & Community

Finding Peace of Mind

  Midas is the 2014 Military Pet of the Year and Dogs on Deployment’s mascot. He is pictured with his owners Sgt. Juan Valdez and fiancé Christen McGrath.

National non-profit provides military service members an option to leaving their cherished pets at an animal shelter when deployed.

Husband and wife, Alisa and Shawn Johnson, were faced with a hard decision when they were both given military orders and had no options for their beloved dog, JD. Thankfully, for the Johnsons, a relative offered to take care of JD during their time of need. Unfortunately, things don’t always turn out so well for military families and their pets. Across the nation, military service members face the re-homing or surrendering of their pets due to the demands of military careers and often cite military obligations as the reason for taking their pet to a local shelter. Through their own experiences, the Johnsons recognized the need for a national network of volunteers willing to board military pets and Dogs on Deployment was created.

Dogs on Deployment is a national 501(c)(3) non-profit providing a central network for military members to find volunteers willing to board their pets while they are deployed, or have other service commitments, making them unable to temporarily care for their pets. Dogs on Deployment was created based on the idea that no pet should ever be surrendered to a shelter due to a military commitment. DoD exists to help military members keep their pets by alleviating the need for pet relinquishment from military members due to the hardships of deployments.

To date 665 pets in need have found temporary care in the homes of DoD boarders during their owner’s military commitments. Through deployments, Wounded Warrior help and veterans assistance, pets, part of the Dogs on Deployment network, find refuge in the loving care of foster homes so their owners can stay focused on their mission. DoD is completely made up of volunteers who span every state and assist DoD with everything from boarding pets to holding events in local areas. For more information on how you can help Dogs on Deployment, please visit our website at www.dogsondeployment.org.

Corynn Myers is the National Public Relations Director for Dogs on Deployment.