A homeless dog that brought comfort to U.S. soldiers overseas will now get a chance to live the cozy life in America.
The three-year-old mixed breed became like family to Sergeant K. and his Army unit in Kosovo last year, after they found him looking for food around their base.
His daily visits and wagging tail soon became the highlight of their day, delivering comfort to those far from home.
Sgt. Kelsey bonded with the pooch he named Duke and wanted to get him to a better life, out of danger.
The staff at the New York-based charity Paws of War promised to help, so Duke and the sergeant could be together once more.
But, before Duke could find his forever home in the US, disaster struck. He stopped showing up at the base.
Soldiers searched for him for several days, had no luck, and feared the worst. When they finally found him, they discovered he had been shot, was bleeding badly, and was severely dehydrated.
Paws of War sent out an emergency vet team to save Duke’s life.
The nonprofit’s overseas rescue partner, The Alamal Foundation, provided foster care for Duke while he healed. The pup spent six months recovering and eventually rebuilt his muscle strength to the point he was able to walk again.
Recently, Sgt. Kelsey got a message from Dereck Cartright, a veteran and logistics coordinator for Paws of War.
“We are thrilled to be able to tell you that after months of healing and rehabilitation, Duke has made a tremendous recovery.
He is ready for the next part of his journey.”
The lucky canine is projected to be reunited with Sgt. Kelsey this month.
“The entire Army unit is so excited that Duke is coming home,” said Sgt. Kelsey. “This is the moment we’ve prayed for.”
Paws of War launched a fundraising campaign to help cover the cost of Duke’s flight to the U.S, as well as his lifetime medical care.
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