Honor Their Service: Rescue x2
The United States was built on people fighting for freedom and the freedom of generations to come. We here at NewsCenter1 want to recognize those people and those who advocate for them here at home. This week’s edition of “Honor Their Service,” showcases a new program that focuses on helping Veterans by helping shelter animals.
“We in our conversations said, what could happen if we could help them both at the same time? And from that point we started mapping out a plan for matching Veterans with shelter animals who would then, likewise, be trained as service dogs or companion animals to help our Veterans cope as they return back to a semi-normal life after being deployed,” said Coree McCabe, co-founder of Rescue x2.
By getting help from an organization like Super Dogs for Super Heroes, Veterans can be matched up with a dog that has been rescued. That dog would then be trained to serve them in whatever ways they need with the help of trainers like Becky Flanagan. She is also the founder of SDSH and says they’re state and federally recognized with a goal of fighting Veteran suicides and providing service animals to Veterans at no cost to them. “22 veterans a day commit suicide. We are a 501 C-3 non-profit fighting Veteran suicide. Service support or companion, we match rescue dogs to Vets or help them train their own dog to be the best it can be,” said Flanagan.
As a Gulf-War Veteran herself, Becky says that having a service dog has absolutely changed her life and that she understands how important they can be in a Veterans’ life. “There is no better home for a dog than that of a Veteran because they need the dog. It’s not this is my pet. This is what makes it so I can go out in the world.”
Charles Kovach is a Veteran who was recently at a training event with SDSH. He’s had his dog, Susie, for several years and is training her to be his service dog. “She helps me with my anxiety and my PTSD symptoms. She knows when I’m having one of my bad days. She’ll actually come up to me and lay her on my chest or in my lap or she’ll even actually lay all 80 pounds on top of me.”
The Rescue x2 mission is still very new and they’re hoping that more Veterans will take advantage of this opportunity to get the help they need. Flanagan says, “We want to hit two birds with one stone. Save a dog, save a Vet.”