About the Pets for Vets Program
The enduring bond humans share with animals has the power to reduce suffering, mitigate loneliness, improve mental well-being and bridge the gap between ourselves and others. For our returning troops, these benefits are especially important to help ease the transition into civilian life.
Pets for Vets was created to improve the lives of both Veterans and animals by bringing them together in a thoughtful, caring way. Our goal is to give back to the brave servicemen and women who have given everything to our country, while finding homes for deserving shelter pets. By matching the right pet with the right Veteran, everyone wins! Shelter animals receive a second chance at life and Veterans receive a second chance at health and happiness.
How Does It Work?
After we receive an application, we reach out to the Veteran to get to know him/her better. We ask Veterans questions about themselves, their expectations, their needs and their lifestyle. There are no right or wrong answers. The more we know about the Veterans, the easier it is to make a successful and lasting match using our unique Super Bond® process. We then “interview” pets to find the one whose personality and temperament best complements the Veteran’s. Although most of our skilled animal companions are dogs, we have also placed cats and even a rabbit! It all comes down to the specific needs and desires of the Veteran.
Once a selection is made, the pet spends time in the home of one of our professional trainers who uses only positive reinforcement methods to teach good manners, basic obedience, and other valuable skills. Training may also include becoming comfortable with wheel chairs or crutches, as well as recognizing panic or anxiety disorder behaviors.
When Pets for Vets companion animals meet their new owners, the connection between them is almost immediate thanks to the Super Bond® process. Because each pet is trained, healthy and up-to-date on all vaccinations, it is able to fit seamlessly into its new life. A Welcome Package of equipment and supplies is also provided to make the transition as simple as possible.
How Do I Apply for a Pet?
The program is open to any Veteran living in one of our chapter areas who is capable of caring for a pet and who could benefit from having a skilled animal companion.
To apply, just complete and submit the online application. You will be asked to provide a copy of your DD-214 and a letter from your health care provider. Remember, there are no right or wrong answers. Your honest feedback will help us find the perfect skilled animal companion for you and your situation.
“I don’t know how to thank you for choosing Lady for us. She is such a treat to have. She takes me for walks about 3 times a day, which I enjoy and is good for me. She starts her mornings by crawling in bed with us for her morning loving, then she is on to playing with her balls. Thanks to Pets for Vets to make this all possible…”