03 November 2019

Veterans Affairs & Lowes Heroes - Operation Save-A-Vet, Save-A-Pet Kennels

Before and after photos of the Operation Save-A-Vet, Save-A-Pet and Lowe's Heroes Kennel project. Volunteers from Lowe's Home Improvement stores worked ...

Is everybody ready to be a hero?!?

We started this program in June of 2015. We built it from the ground up. What we do is that we get dogs from rescues; we get dogs from breeders--anywhere we can get them, to be honest. We train them and we get them to become service dogs and we give them to veterans, totally free of charge. We don't ask any other commitment from the veteran except to put in hard work, train with your service animal, and learn to live life in a different way so that you can get back into society and get back into your normalcy. When these dogs are with their vets, it's a life changing experience. If you can keep a tear out of your eye, you're one hardcore person. The dogs I've transferred over ownership to, which is about six of them to date, It's an amazing, amazing feeling. So all the hardwork, blood, sweat and tears that you put into this, it's instantly reflected, and you just know you did something really, really good in life. We raise money for this program and we operate it off of grants and donations. We don't use one penny of taxpayer dollars to fund this program. So we do all the hard work for this. We do fundraisers a couple times a year, we solicit donations, we work with amazing people like yourselves. So what you're doing, not only is helping a veteran--it's helping many, many veterans for years to come. An environment where they can train, they can work, In the kennel, we could have a grooming facility for therapy. I mean, I just envision--I'm a big dreamer-- So if some veterans wanted to learn to groom . . . Yeah, dream big! That's a great idea. That is awesome. Now we're going to be able to grow. Now we're going to be able to open up our breeding section of our program. We're going to be able to have at least 10 to 15 dogs on site all the time and a place

for veterans to come on their off time to work with dogs, to help maintain the facility. Justin and his Veterans Affairs Department, the project that you're a part of, is one of the shining resources here in Franklin County to provide services to folks who really deserve them. We have a lot of folks in need and you're going to be helping us expand our program immensely and on behalf of the Franklin County Commissioners, I just want to take a minute to say thank you very much. Give me an L! Give me an O! Give me a W! Give me an E! Give me an AH! Give me another AH! One more AH! Give me an S! What's that spell? Lowe's! What did you say? Lowe's! Whenever you're done at the end of the day, just know that you made a life long impact on veterans in Franklin County and surrounding areas, so you should all be very proud of yourselves. So I just want to give yourselves a round of applause for everything your're doing. [clapping]