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    Posted August 17, 2011 by
    Camp Pendelton, California
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Salute to troops

    Retired disabled military dog Rocky dies if not adopted; served three tours in Iraq




    Rocky is a retired military dog who will be put down on August 24 if he’s not adopted. He served three tours in Iraq and desperately needs a loving home to enjoy his final years. Pets for Patriots is responding to a request to help create awareness of this veteran’s plight. We have spoken to authorities at Camp Pendleton in San Diego and confirmed this story.

    Rocky currently lives at Camp Pendleton, his home base since entering the Marine Corps in 2004. He served three tours in Iraq between 2004 and 2007 as a patrol and explosives dog, and returned to the states after his last handler was killed in theater. Since then, he has not had a steady handler, but has continued to serve on base until March of this year. By that time, a degenerative condition rendered him unable to work and he was retired. Typically an ex-military K9 will be adopted by his handler, but Rocky has no handler to call his own.

    The base kennels are not suitable to provide the type of ongoing care and attention that Rocky needs and deserves. And without an individual or family to adopt him, he will be put down. He was recently featured in an article about military dogs enjoying a bright future after service, but that’s not the case for him.

    Because Rocky is a retired patrol dog, military protocol does not permit him to be surrendered to a shelter.


    Like most military working dogs, Rocky is independent, but he has a sweet temperament and enjoys relaxing in the sun. As a result of his disability, he uses a canine wheelchair and needs assistance to do “his business.” He would do best in a family that can devote a lot of time to him, and that has no small children or other animals. As with many military canines, Rocky shows slight dog aggression. More than anything, Rocky needs someone who honors his service, and who will love and accept him.

    Rocky’s known medical conditions:

    Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia/Enlarged prostate
    Mild hip dysplasia L coxofemoral joint, grade I
    Bilateral coxofemoral DJD (mild)
    Bilateral neurologic defecits rear legs – degenerative myelopathy
    Pressure/kennel sores

    If you or someone you know has a big heart for this dog who put his life on the line for our country, please contact Camp Pendleton directly and immediately if you have questions about Rocky:

    Spc. Joseph Ramsey: (760) 725-5527; email: joseph.t.ramsey@us.army.mil

    Spc. Jade Clarke: (760) 725-5527; email: jade.clarke@us.army.mil

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