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No matter what you do in life and no matter where you are while you’re doing it, if you’re a dog lover then you will melt into their furry little paws the moment they greet you.
This has been proven to be absolutely true among the soldiers of the Alpha Company 1/121 Battalion who all fell in love with a furry four-legged friend they met while on tour in Afghanistan.
The Georgia soldiers have a little less than 7 months before they put their boots back on American soil and before they do, they want to make sure that the Company dog, Bear, will be planting his paws right along with them.
The brave men of the Battalion first met Bear when the stray dog came striding right up to them in their station like he’d belonged there with the soldiers from the very beginning.
“Bear showed up outside the gates one day and was a instant member of the family.”
Unfortunately, though, dogs, no matter how adorable or friendly, aren’t allowed to stay on military bases for security purposes.
Unwilling to force the sweet-hearted stray too far away, lest they never see him again, the soldiers in the company took shifts walking out off base to bring Bear some much-needed food and affection.
It soon became clear to the Company’s soft-hearted soldiers that they were going to have to come up with a plan for Bear.
With the clock ticking down on the time they have left before coming home, the troops decided that Bear was making it home with them, one way or another.
The biggest hurdle that these amazing men faced in getting their furry angel home was the cost to get him cleared for entry onto U.S. soil.
As is protocol for all the beloved dogs following their adopted humans home from the war, Bear would be required to first be vaccinated and quarantined before being allowed to enter the U.S. Not only is the process quite long, but it’s extraordinarily expensive.
Lucky for Bear, the soldiers in this company know just how extraordinary he is!
In an interview with 11Alive, Alyssa Bailey, whose long-time boyfriend Chris is a member of Company 1/121, explains what a blessing it has been for her boyfriend and all the soldiers to have Bear around, acting as what one could best describe as a therapeutic companion dog…without being trained for it.
“He’s [Bear] super sweet and he’ll just lay around and hang out. They just love him, they’ve bonded with him. “
Now that the troops are looking forward to returning home, they want to make sure that Bear will be taken care of the same way that he has taken care of them.
“Being over there with Bear gives them something to be happy about. Bear has no one to take care of him if they can’t bring him home.”
The adorable dog is oozing out of the edges with love to give and he deserves to come home with the brave men that he has adopted as his own pack of humans.
While Bear may be a stray over in Afghanistan if he makes it to the states he will have too many homes to choose from.
Alyssa points out in the interview that, though her boyfriend would like to stake a claim on Bear for the dog’s living situation, he’s got a lot of competitors throughout the Company’s men.
The troops decided to reach out to the Afghanistan-based animal welfare nonprofit organization Nowzad to raise funds for the requirements to bring Bear back home with them.
The fundraiser included medical costs of transplanting 3 other dogs, too, and the goal was set for $15,000.
Before being shared by the news, they had only reached $1,000 of their 15K target. Now, just 26 days after running the campaign and airing Bear’s amazing story in the news, Nowzad has received $880 above their $15,000 dollar goal to bring not just Bear, but all four of the dogs in the campaign home!
We are so happy that Bear and his buddies will get to spend the rest of their days with the loving troops they’ve been protecting for us! To see Bear’s full story watch the video below.