In late 2007, we received a plea for help from a U.S. soldier desperately trying to get his dog Charlie out of Iraq. The soldier found Charlie while on patrol in a dangerous part of Baghdad. Charlie was tiny, frail, and starving. Despite military rules against it, the soldier took in Charlie and nursed him back to health. The two formed such a strong bond that the soldier promised Charlie he would bring him home to the United States and give him the life he deserved. So when the end of his deployment approached, the soldier knew he could not leave him behind.
It took months of hard work, navigating through endless red tape, and reaching out to many animal lovers willing to help on this mission, but in February 2008, we brought Charlie to the United States. At that moment, our Operation Baghdad Pups: Worldwide program was born.
Since then, our work has expanded beyond saving pups from Baghdad. We have helped over 1,200 dogs, cats, and even a donkey reunite with the heroes who rescued them. We have transported animals from the Middle East, Central Europe, Southeast Asia, and Africa. That is why we have decided to rename Operation Baghdad Pups: Worldwide to Patriot Pets. Patriot Pets will continue helping to reunite U.S. service members and the animals they rescue. We look forward to expanding this program and helping more heroes and patriot pets in need.