"Operation Doggy Treats" supports military dogs and handlers
The Murray State College Veterinary Technology Program is joining the Oklahoma Veterinary Medical Association’s (OVMA) drive to help military dogs and their handlers. A drive is underway to collect care-package items to send to American military dog kennels across the globe. This is the first year for the drive, and Murray State College Veterinary Technology Program Co-Director Debbie Reed says she hopes it will become an annual event.
“This was an excellent opportunity for our students to show their support of our military heroes,” says Reed. “They are excited to be able to show their appreciation to not only our military men and women, but also to their canine partners that play a vital role in military services. They also hope this will bring recognition to our service dogs that sometimes are overlooked for their heroism.”
While the use of dogs in warfare goes back to the Revolutionary war, the practice did not become common until World War I. In the early years of service, dogs were used as sentries, message carriers and as search dogs to help find wounded soldiers. Dogs were even used to keep the trenches in WWI free of rats. Nowadays the canine force has expanded roles in detecting traces of explosives and drugs. With a keen sense of smell, ten-times stronger than a human’s, a dog’s nose has become an invaluable tool for the military. It’s not just the canine nose that is an asset, however. The dog’s heart is also big factor in the success of using dogs. Dogs form bonds with their handlers and aim to please. When it’s time to perform, the dog is ready and willing.
Now you can help the military dogs and their handlers. You can donate items at the Veterinary Technology building on the Murray State College campus in Tishomingo or at the box in the lobby of the University Center of Southern Oklahoma in Ardmore through January 28. A short list of items you can donate includes: medium or large Milkbone hard treats, large Greenies or Pedigree Dentastix, peanut butter, grooming tools, and toys. Donated toys need to be durable and large enough for a 70-pound or larger dog. General toiletries, over the counter medication, games, and reading materials can also be donated for the handlers.
Click here for a full list of items you can donate, including restricted items