Since separating from service David enjoys a busy, yet far less dangerous life than he experienced as a three tour Iraq war veteran. Now welcoming him home each night is a 107-pound pup who thinks he is a lap dog.
From battlefront to home front
For eight years David served as an infantryman in the Army. In this role he was part of a team responsible to deter, capture, and destroy enemy forces, in addition to other combat related duties.
During the course of his enlistment David was deployed to Bosnia and served three tours in Iraq.
These days life for the young veteran is decidedly more tranquil.
David now lives in St. Charles, Missouri, where he works as an emergency medical technician (EMT). But in 2017 he decided that his life was missing something – more precisely, someone – a four-legged friend.
A dog who never had a home
David always had dogs and cats growing up. So it was not surprising that after he separated from service the three tour Iraq war veteran decided to adopt a companion pet.
“I had heard of Pets for Patriots through other online veterans groups,” he recalls, “and after learning about what they did and about the area shelters they work with, I decided to adopt through them.”
Pets for Patriots is proud to serve veterans from WWII to active duty, from all armed forces. We offer a range of benefits to make pet guardianship more affordable and to inspire veterans to adopt the most overlooked shelter animals.
David would become our first adoption through our partnership with APA Adoption Center of Missouri. The St. Louis shelter offers veterans in our program $25 off their adoption fees.
It was October 2017. Jayce was a large, 10 month-old dog who had been transferred into APA Adoption Center of Missouri from another animal welfare organization.
The Mastiff-Shepherd mix was already nearly 60 pounds and had been homeless his entire young life.
“He doesn’t know he’s huge”
Within one week of being approved into our program David met and adopted Jayce. He promptly changed the dog’s name to Bane.
The big dog wasted no time making his mark in David’s home and heart.
“It’s been nothing but fun with this big goon,” he says. “He doesn’t know he’s huge and it makes for some fun times.”
Since their adoption David and Bane have become as close as ever – literally.
Bane loves using David as his pillow, and both person and pet enjoy spending as much time together as possible.
David will never forget the many harrowing experiences he endured during three deployments to war-torn Iraq. And his job as an EMT is not without stresses of its own.
However, that anxiety is tempered by more than 100 pounds of puppy love.
The Army veteran knows where to send others who may be considering some four-legged therapy as well.
“Thanks again for all the assistance with the adoption process,” he says. “I’d recommend this program to any of my veteran friends without reservation.”
Three tour Iraq war veteran finds lapdog for life
Although Bane has matured into a young adult dog he is still as energetic as ever. He has embraced his first – and forever – home with abandon, and showers David with all of the unconditional love he can muster.
But the 107-pound dog has no idea just how big he is, which is one of the things that David loves most about him.
“He’s a big lap dog who thinks he’s a tiny lapdog,” he says. “He also goes crazy during tug-of-war and will be your best friend for an ice cube.”
The three-tour war veteran has adopted a best friend for life. And in return the big dog has brought David renewed happiness.
“Bane, our four year-old Mastiff mix, has brought a new level of joy to my life that was missing for a long time,” David shares. “Since adopting him our home has been filled with his loving and playful personality, and our days are a lot brighter with him in them.”