By Emma Koeniger, SPCAI staff
From Texas to Guam military families encounter overwhelming costs to transport their “fur-babies” causing many families to reach the difficult decision of surrendering their beloved pet to the local shelter. In 2013 SPCA International created Operation Military Pets. A program designed to help military families cope with the financial burden of transporting their pets when receiving permanent change of station orders (PCS). Originally intended to only be used for the transportation of cats and dogs, OMP has also assisted in the transportation costs for horses, birds and bunnies.
The Lacasse Family
"It was a very long 3 week journey for her and we missed her like crazy, but she is here and settling well. I have attached a few pictures of her and I want to thank you all again soooooo much for this generous gift. We are truly blessed to have had the support to help bring our beloved family member from overseas. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!"
The Lay Family
"We would like to thank SPCA International for the generous grant . Oliver made it to Germany safety. The grant was a blessing to our family. Oliver is loving our new home and we have taken a family trip to Berlin."
The Beisner Family
"Shiloh is home with us here in Hawaii. We are all setting in and have finally finished unpacking. Thank you again to this amazing organization for all they did to keep our little family together. This picture was taken on New Year's Day of us all together with our 'shy guy'."
The Lasater Family
"I received the grant this morning. We are so thankful for the help and happy to have our pets with us here at the new duty station! Thank you for this and the work that you do!"
The Alford Family
"The SPCAI OMP [program] is an amazing organization! It means so much to us military families to have our furry family move with us as we move from base to base. We can't thank the SPCA OMP for working to help raise money to transport our bulldog with us to Japan. Just a little money goes a long way to help keep our family complete."
These are just a few families out of the over 800 families that SPCA International has been able to assist over the last 4 years. The cost of pet transportation can costs thousands of dollars, these families have felt this financial strain. Through the Operation Military Pets program, SPCA International will continue to keep these military families together and pets out of shelters.