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In the month of September, We-Care.com paid special tribute to America’s VetDogs, a nonprofit on a mission to help those who have honorably served our country live with dignity and independence. If you have not yet chosen a cause to support with your shopping, we invite you to consider supporting America’s VetDogs.

1. Tell us a little bit about your history with this organization. If you don’t mind us asking, what inspired you to join America’s VetDogs in their mission?

I’ve been part of the America’s VetDogs’ team for close to three years. I decided to join this team because I knew that I would meet the most amazing people with remarkable stories. Not only do I have the chance to meet these inspiring individuals, but I have an opportunity to make a difference in their lives. The programs that we offer play a life-changing role in peoples’ lives, and that’s something I could not pass up.

2. Is there a particular story that has really moved you and made you feel extra proud to be a part of this organization?

We served a young veteran who fought for our country in Operation Enduring Freedom. The vehicle he was in hit an IED (improvised explosive device) causing it to flip over, severely injuring its passengers. Once this veteran arrived on our campus, and received his special trained service dog, you could see him slowing coming out of his shell and becoming more comfortable with the other veterans in class, and the instructors who worked with him. The dog was an amazing partner that was specifically trained to meet his physical needs. In addition, the dog provided amazing companionship and support. Check out Eric’s incredible story in the video below:

3. What’s something people don’t know about service dogs that you wish they did?

They make an amazing difference in the lives of the veterans we serve. Some wounds are visible, however, many are not; and to see the power of what these dogs can do physically and emotionally is really a miracle to witness.

4. Tell us about puppy sponsorship and the impact that it could have.

It costs over $50,000 to breed, raise, train, and place one assistance dog, but America’s VetDogs provides its services completely free of charge to the individual. America’s VetDogs is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization founded by the Guide Dog Foundation that relies on contributions from generous individuals, corporations, service clubs, and foundations to fund its mission to help those who have served our country live with dignity and independence. Puppy Sponsorships help cover the costs mentioned above.

For a $6,000 contribution to the organization, sponsors are given the opportunity to name one of our specially bred pups. They can specify the breed and/or gender of the pup, and may even visit our campus to personally choose the pup they want to sponsor. At approximately 8 – 10 weeks, their sponsored pup is assigned to its puppy raiser, with whom it will live with for 14 – 18 months. As the pup grows, the sponsor will receive periodic updates of its progress.

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5. September is National Guide Dog Awareness Month, but America’s VetDogs requests assistance all year long. How can We-Care users give back to your organization beyond Cause of the Month?

We-Care users can give back through donating directly to the organization and sponsoring a dog. They can also sponsor a team once a dog and veteran are matched for an upcoming class. Additionally, supporters have the opportunity to either host or attend one of our fundraising events. Lastly, of course, users can support the cause for free by shopping online using We-Care.com.

A Boston native turned New Yorker, Tyler joined We-Care.com in July 2014. With a public relations degree from Quinnipiac University, he channels most of his energy into combing through what’s trending on social media and nurturing our partnerships with nonprofits. Whatever energy he has left at the end of the day is reserved time for fitness, family, and friends.