Veterans Day

I’m plagiarizing myself. Because sometimes the same message bears repeating….

Today is a day that we remember and honor those men and women and even canines who have served their countries in times of war – and during peacekeeping times as well. We call today Remembrance or Veteran’s Day. In the dog show world, the term veteran is used to describe an older dog. In the human world, the term Veteran means so much more.

Veterans are very, very special. They defended our rights and our liberties and without them, many of us would not enjoy the freedoms that we do today. The poppy has become a symbol of this day with its connection to the poem “In Flanders Fields.” The poppies bloomed across many of the battlefields of WW I – and they became symbolic of the blood shed on those fields.While we have this special day to honor Veterans, we really need to keep them in our minds and hearts all year round.

We also know that due to the often unthinkable challenges of war time service, many Veterans have after effects – known as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. As I understand it can be a difficult condition, not only affecting the Veteran, but family members of the Veteran as well – who see their need for help. And that’s where, in some cases, we canines can come in. We can work as Service Dogs to help Veterans suffering from PTSD. We are specially trained and we can detect when someone is feeling anxious or depressed or provide comfort if someone is having nightmares. We provide a service that is often life-saving. When you look for websites and organizations that provide dogs to Veterans, it seems that there are a number of options. I even found one group in the US that has Veterans training the dogs to serve other Veterans. Now that seems like an excellent idea. I urge you to research these organizations – and consider supporting such programs for the men and women who have given so much for you. It’s a wonderful way to say thanks…

And today – take a minute to think of and honor those who have served – and still do serve. They deserve more thanks than we can ever give them.

Have a good one. PEACE and paws up.

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