K9s for Warriors does so many things right, it’s amazing. Most everyone sees the numbers and the graduations. Things like this:
I want to talk about the matching of dogs to veterans that they do every month for every class. Consider this (This is an EXAMPLE!): The head of Dog Training tells you that these 15 dogs are ready to be matched with a Warrior. There are 12 Warriors coming for the next class. The Warrior Trainers then review the Warrior information and learn about the dogs available. They spend the first day the Warriors are on campus getting to know them. Then out of the 15 dogs available, they choose the dog that they feel is the best match for that Warrior. Stop and think about that for a moment. There’s not a lot of information to go on, and they don’t have a lot of dogs to choose from. To think that their match success rate is over 95% boggles the mind – at least it boggles mine!!! That’s is such a tribute to everything these hard working women and men do behind the scenes at K9s.
Here’s what is even more amazing, at least to me it is. What about the 5% that isn’t a success. I know; we don’t talk about that. We celebrate the 95%. After all, that’s an incredible success. Let me tell you, that 5% is also a success. Why? Because the folks at K9s For Warriors Do Not Give Up! K9s is all about 2nd chances – for rescue dogs and for our veterans. And sometimes, it’s a 3rd chance. They don’t give up on the dog or on the veteran. They Do Not Give Up! They say, “Let’s find the right dog, the right veteran.” The 3rd chance.
This was the scenario with Bella and Missy. To bring it down to one sentence, Bella was not the right service dog for Missy. Oh don’t get me wrong; Missy LOVES Bella and coming to the decision that she was not the right service dog for her was extremely difficult. One of the most selfless things Missy told me concerning this was that Bella will be an amazing service dog with the right Warrior. She is grateful that K9s didn’t give up on Bella because she has a huge heart and will really help someone.
So in late September, Bella returned to K9s For Warriors. She had 8 months of raising with me, 7 months of working with Missy, so it was just a matter of a refresher in the kennels before she was matched with her new Warrior.
Oh, and remember what I said – they Do Not Give Up! Missy was back last month and was paired with her new service dog, Miss Ringo Starr.
And … I have a friend in Missy for which I am forever grateful.
Until next time, be safe.
Special Announcement Blog, November 1, 2017