Proof of service

Who is eligible to apply?

We accept applications from men and women at all stages of their military careers and from all United States armed forces. Pets for Patriots is proud to serve veterans from WWII through those currently in service. Separated veterans must have received an Honorable discharge.

Individuals convicted of a felony, sexual offense of any kind and/or any type of animal mistreatment, abuse, neglect or cruelty are ineligible.

Have questions? Check our FAQ for answers.

Length of service requirement

You must have completed a minimum of 190 days of military service. Basic and/or active duty training is not applicable towards this requirement. Reservists and members of the National Guard who were never activated are eligible to apply, and must meet this same minimum service requirement.

Proof of service requirements

All applicants are required to provide a copy of one of the following documents. If you are separated and do not have a copy of your DD214, you can request a copy from the National Archives.

Please redact your social security number prior to sending any documentation:

Active duty:
  • Copy of current original orders, including signature page(s), OR
  • ERB (Army – Enlisted Record Brief) reflecting full/current active duty service history, OR
  • CDB (Air Force – Career Data Brief), OR
  • BIR (Marine Corps – Basic Individual Record),reflecting full/current active duty service history, OR
  • ESR (Navy – Electronic Service Record) or NSIPS (Navy Standard Integrated Personnel Systems),reflecting full/current active duty service history
  • Statement of service from your CO with your name, entry date on active duty, duration of any lost time and name of the command providing the information; must be currently dated, on command letterhead and signed.
National Guard and Reserves:
  • Most recent/last-issued DD214 with block including character of service as Honorable, OR
  • DD256 if separated from Reserves and/or was never activated, OR
  • Copy of your NGB-22 (Report of Separation and Record of Service), with proof of Honorable of service, OR
  • Copy of your NGB-23 (Retirement Points Accounting), with evidence of Honorable of service.
Inactive reserve, retired or veteran (discharged/separated from service):
  • Most recent/last-issued DD214 reflecting final tour of duty, with block including character of service as Honorable; we do not accept discharge certificates towards this requirement.

Character of service must be Honorable; separations characterized as General discharge, Under Honorable conditions or Dishonorable are ineligible


The following are NOT accepted as proof of service:

      • Pay stubs/LES
      • Dependent IDs
      • Retired military IDs
      • Military IDs
      • Disability letters
      • ID cards from the Veterans Administration
      • Social Security cards
      • Other documents not listed explicitly as acceptable proof of service

Other information you should know:

      • You can request a copy of your DD214 from the National Archives
      • Please redact your social security number prior to sending any documents; our privacy policy describes how we handle your information
      • Documents copied/pasted into Word document, txt file or into the body of the email are not accepted; we suggest emailing PDF of original document, or sending via fax or regular mail
      • Spouses, parents, siblings, other relatives, guardians or any other individual may not apply on behalf of a veteran, without exception. The application is a legal agreement made directly between Pets for Patriots and the veteran. If you need help applying online please call toll-free 877-473-8223.

Other circumstances

Pets for Patriots welcomes veterans who are receiving mental health treatment or are participating in veterans’ courts diversion programs, and who are recommended by their counselors for companion pet adoption.

Mental health treatment (PTSD, TBI, depression, anxiety or other psychological condition):
  • Letter from treating psychologist, psychiatrist or psychiatric social worker, on his/her letterhead
  • Currently dated (within one month of your application to Pets for Patriots), addressed to Pets for Patriots and signed by the treating mental health professional
  • State that you are under the care of this mental health professional and are ready for the responsibilities of pet adoption and ownership; no medical information or diagnosis is necessary
  • Letters must be typewritten; handwritten letters will not be accepted
  • Letters recommending, suggesting, prescribing or otherwise advocating for service animals will not be accepted

Veterans treatment court and jail diversion programs:
  • Letter from your treating psychologist, psychiatrist, psychiatric social worker, or supervising veterans’ court mentor, judge or probation officer on his/her letterhead
  • Currently dated, addressed to Pets for Patriots (within one month of your application to Pets for Patriots) and signed by this treating mental health professional or court designate
  • State that you are participating in a treatment and/or jail diversion program mandated by your local veterans’ court
  • State that you are meeting all obligations mandated by the program
  • State that you are ready for the responsibilities of pet adoption and ownership
  • Letters must be typewritten; handwritten letters will not be accepted

Proof of legal name change: (Marriage, divorce or other)
  • Marriage certificate, divorce decree or other legal document detailing name change(s)
  • If multiple name changes apply, you must provide legal proof of each name change
  • Drivers license, VA card, or similar forms of identification are not accepted

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