Thanks to the VCAS dog placement program, many service men and women in central Ohio have been able to find companionship and successfully rebuild their lives through the love of a rescue dog. The program not only finds the perfect dog for the veteran applicant, but also covers the cost of veterinary care and provides food, supplies and training for the first year.
The VCAS rescue dog placement process is thorough and detail-oriented to ensure that the match between dog and veteran is mutually beneficial. After a veteran applies, a VCAS team member speaks with a veteran over the phone to get to know them better. Home visits help determine the veteran’s lifestyle and after figuring out their needs the VCAS team searches for the perfect dog match. Once adopted from a shelter, the dog is fostered with a VCAS volunteer to help it decompress and acclimate to life outside of the shelter. After a few weeks, the veteran gets to meet their new companion at the foster home. Following the meet-and-greet, the veteran decides if they would like to move forward with adopting and transitioning the dog from their foster home to their forever home. Supplies are then delivered to the veteran’s home so that they can get it set up to welcome their new best friend when the final adoption day arrives.
After giving the new canine-veteran pair some time to bond and develop a routine they attend their first veterinary visit together and begin 7 weeks of professional dog training. Training classes further build the relationship between the dog and their new owner and allow veterans to meet and connect with each other. Throughout the first year, veterans and dog teams receive dog food, needed supplies and veterinary care and support. A check-in is completed at 6 months and then again at 1 year to ensure that everything is going smoothly and see if any further support is needed. Once a part of the VCAS community, veterans are invited to events held throughout the year to check-in, meet up with friends, and build new relationships.