Returning War Dogs Also Need Time to Adjust to Life at Home

Contract Working Dog Master Corporal Uzo (far right) with the Canadian 2 Troop,
2nd Combat Engineer Regiment, 2-3 Field Squadron in October, 2011.

photo via The Daily Beast

A fascinating story on the Daily Beast website highlights the adjustments that military dogs must go through when their service has ended. We’ve posted many times about the incredible jobs these dogs do on the battlefield, and we have advocated for simplifying the adoption process back home. But as the story of Uzo reveals, adopting a military dog can come with some challenges:

When Carrie [Barker] picked the dog up and brought him back to her household. . .Uzo was not quite the gentleman she expected.

The new dog was incredibly nervous and on edge, patrolling the halls, sniffing in closets, and climbing on and under furniture. Whenever a helicopter flew over their home in Park City, Utah, he would stare up, wagging his tail furiously.

Carrie later learned that Uzo had been trained to sniff out explosives and to attack on command. He had never lived in a home or had his own bed. In time, with lots of love and attention, Uzo bonded to the Barker family, which includes a disabled child with her own therapy dog and Carrie’s father, who suffers from PTSD.

Click here for the full story about Uzo and Gabe, another retired military dog adjusting to homelife.

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