Holiday House Pet Resort and Doylestown Veterinary Hospital hold an annual fundraising campaign to benefit the United States War Dogs Association (USWDA) and its Rx Program from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Last year over $2000 was raised thanks to generous donations from clients, the community, and members of the Doylestown Village Improvement Association Veterans Committee.

“We have been working to create awareness and to raise funds for this organization for the past several years. Last year we raised the bar and challenged ourselves to reach a more significant goal—and we were successful! Again this summer we are challenging ourselves by optimistically increasing our goal to $3500 because we feel strongly about the work this organization is doing on behave of active and retired military working dogs,” said Dr. Laura Weis, who along with her husband Dr. Randy Weis, own and operate the pet resort and veterinary hospital.

What is the US War Dogs Association and why is it important?

The United States War Dogs Association supports active military working dogs and their handlers, and retired military and civilian working dogs. In some cases, retired military working dogs can assume roles in government contract work and law enforcement before retiring to a life of well-deserved leisure with a loving family.

USAF SSgt Terry White and MWD Hattie in Guam

USAF SSgt Terry White and MWD Hattie in Guam. Hattie is now a retired MWD and living with the White family.

Active military working dogs support our troops serving around the world. These dogs perform important, life-saving jobs like detection for explosives, responding to bomb threats, and patrolling for enemies in order to keep our military men and women safe. Like our troops, they work long hours under extreme conditions to serve our county. And as one can imagine the bond formed between dog and handler is extremely strong because their missions can be dangerous. These dogs protect and save the lives of our sons and daughters serving in the military.

USWDA programs include raising funds and awareness for war memorials and service recognition, educational programs, corporate partnerships for specialty veterinary care, prescriptions, pet supplies and care packages for active teams, and transportation and adoption services.

The donations, raised during the Holiday House Pet Resort & Doylestown Veterinary Hospital fundraising campaign, benefit the USWDA Rx program for retired military and service dogs. The program provides free prescriptions to retired dogs registered with the USWDA. Many of the dogs require medications to help with pain management, inflammation, anxiety/PTSD, allergies, and other medical conditions as a result of their service. In February the organization also introduced the Rainbow Bridge Assistance program for all dogs in the Rx program as a way to help with costs when end-of-life care is necessary.

“These retired military dogs are usually adopted by their military handlers or other well-vetted families. Many dogs require costly medical care and prescriptions. Our free Rx program financially supports the families to provide the necessary care our canine veterans need. There are over 200 dogs currently enrolled and costs reach thousands of dollars every month,” said Mr. Ron Aiello, president of the USWDA and retired Marine who served as a military working dog handler with his partner German Shepard Stormy in Vietnam. wardogs-badge

The USWDA is headquartered in Burlington, NJ with local chapters located across the United States. Mission K9 Rescue, based in Houston, TX, which works closely with the USWDA, provides assistance and support for working dogs worldwide. The organization’s purpose is to serve retiring and retired military working dogs, contract working dogs, and other dogs who serve. The mission is to “rescue, reunite, re-home, rehabilitate and repair” any retired working dog that has served our country. The group is active in bringing military working dogs retired overseas back to the United States and coordinating adoption efforts with a handler or appropriate family.

For more information about the organization, its mission, programs, and membership, visit: www.uswardogs.org.