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A tangible way to support the troops

We’re going to be hearing the phrase “Support the troops” a lot in the coming weeks, so here’s a way that you can actually do something to support them: You can be a foster caregiver for their pets.

[Army Staff Sergeant Dwayne] Armour is stationed at Fort Hood, whose 48,000 soldiers make it the largest army installation in the world. The 265-square-mile base is near Killeen, 180 miles northwest of Houston.

Thousands of dogs and cats were killed on American soil during Operation Desert Storm. Soldiers like Armour couldn’t find a friend or relative to pet-sit indefinitely, so they abandoned their animals on country roads or dumped them at the pound — and animals that enter the pound usually don’t leave alive.

In 1991, Killeen had a mass slaughter of military pets, says Carmen Wallace, who volunteers at Second Chance, an animal shelter in Killeen.

The Killeen pound “couldn’t even hold the pets but a couple of hours,” Wallace says. “They were euthanizing them left and right.”

To prevent mass mutt murders and keep dogs and cats off casualty lists, Wallace is organizing a foster program. Armour saw it on the news last week; he called and the next day Wallace had several potential foster parents who promise to send him pictures and updates while he’s gone.

“Time is getting short. I would never just abandon her,” he says. “I was really getting depressed about it. We’re getting closer and closer, and I didn’t know what I was going to do.”

As noted in the article, you can go to NetPets or Hugs for Homeless Animals to offer your assistance. So there you have it.

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  1. R. Alex says:

    Thanks a lot for the link! I just sent NetPets an email.

  2. Electrolite says:

    Support the troops?

    Charles Kuffner has a stunningly practical idea for how to do so.

  3. Helen Dearborn says:

    Would be willing to keep a pet for a serviceperson while they are in IraQ. I live in the Carolinas.

  4. Jeremy Shaffer says:

    Tell SSG Dwayne Robert Armour to e-mail me. I haven’t seen him in years. [email protected]