Saturday, October 18, 2014

No Dog with a Loving Family Should Have to be Relinquished to the Animal Shelter

As a child, I brought home every stray animal I crossed paths with. I was about 7 years old when I was feeding that big stray cat that came around.  Even when he bit my thumb and hung on for dear life  as I tried to make him let go, and even after the drama of trying to find out whether or not I would need rabies injections, I couldn't be dissuaded.

I continued to bring animals home and add members to our family.

Alaskan Malamute Portrait by Lynn M Stone
As a pre-teen, I found a large, angry Malamute dog in the neighborhood where my friends lived.  He
had clearly been abused or neglected. And would growl and snap at any adults who approached. If you imagine a cross between a junkyard dog and a wolf, you would be close to what he appeared to be.  I begged my mom to let me have him.  Fortunately, my mom was a bit, um, impulsive.  Despite his clear aggression toward adults, she told me that if I could get him into the hatchback of our small Vega station wagon, I could bring him home.  I did and she kept her promise.

As a parent, I'm not sure I would have done the same. I would have given more than a second thought to putting an angry dog in my car and driving miles down the road.  My child in the back of the steel and glass trap with this unknown beast. That scenario could have turned out badly.

I'm glad she was a bit unpredictable like that.  And I'm really glad that he didn't bite my face off as we drove those miles home. King turned out to be the best dog we had for many years and lived his life into old age with us.  He was never aggressive with any of our family members; adult or child but he was the best guard dog a farm family could ask for.

As an adult, I have limited the number of pets in my home. My focus was on raising my children.  I've also lived in limited space with limited finances.  Even so, I daydream about the day that I can continue to give animals in need a loving and safe home.

My children grew up and opened my eyes  to some of the difficulties of life in the armed forces.  I watched as our soldiers gave up their cars, their personal items, and worst of all, their pets, due to relocation and deployments.  The ongoing daydream I had about stray animals began to shift.  I began to dream of the day that I could own a kennel of sorts. A place to keep family pets while their people were deployed.  I kept thinking, "some day, I can do something to help."

Imagine my surprise and excitement when I recently found a way I can help now!  The opportunity comes through an organization called Dogs on Deployment.  I immediately signed up.

People register on the site to "foster" pets in the short term, while the service persons are sent to trainings, have to relocate, or are deployed. Service persons can list their pets that will soon need temporary homes. I won't rehash all of the information on the site, because there is so much information there, But I encourage you to register and have a look around. 

If you need proof that a program like this is important or you think that dogs aren't happy when their family members return, watch this.

I am limited with the size and breed of pets that I can foster due to living in an apartment.  But I have signed up. And I look forward to having a visitor while the owner is deployed.  It is the very least I can do for our service people who don't want to relinquish their pets to the shelters while they are serving our country.

written by Dawn Rae
Disclosure: In affiliation with, Dawn Rae is a blogger and content writer who may earn compensation from the sale of Allposters products.

Don't forget to stop by Ruth's PAWSit Blog Hop today for more dog related blog posts! 


  1. Ah! The King and I comes to mind as I read your perfect picture tale of that Malamute rescue! You are a dear dog loving soul for signing up with Dogs on Deployment, What a great organization, showing compassion and care for the pets of our military men and women.

  2. What a totally fabulous organization! It is clear you have a precious heart for animals. You will make a wonderful foster mom. All of our family pets are lost animals that have now found a real home, or we adopt from shelters. We take the dogs in our house and our daughter takes the kitties, but they are all loved by all of us.

  3. Dogs on Deployment sounds a really wonderful organisation to help people and their pets.You will be fantastic as a foster mum. You have such a big heart and love.