These puppies were fortunate enough to wander onto the Forward Operating Base of a very special group of American soldiers.
When these soldiers arrived at the small NATO compound where they were to be based, they immediately noticed a number of dogs hanging around. They were told that the dogs had been given their shots and were being used as guard dogs.
One of the soldiers wrote:
“At first we were all a little nervous of the dogs; we didn't want to get attacked. But soon after our arrival the dogs worked their way into our lives and became part of our team. They would constantly come around our living area and check to make sure everything was OK. They would sit at the gate and make sure no intruders would come into our base. Since we were in a very vulnerable situation, the dogs added a constant addition of security as well as continuing friendship and joy. Not only did these dogs continue to help us feel safe, they were so kind to us. It was a constant gift to have them in our lives.
We wanted to return the gift and bring these dogs home to live with us.
Shortly after we had decided this, two additional puppies wandered onto our FOB. We were able to catch them and feed them and protect them. These dogs quickly became part of the family and were accepted by the bigger dogs on the base. As we learned to love the puppies we decided we were going to try to and get them out as well”.
The soldier who decided he would give a home to these two puppies wrote:
"My friends asked me what I would name them and I decided to name both of the dogs after two of my best friends, and brothers in arms that have died in the recent months. I named the male puppy Mario after my best friend who was killed in a car wreck a few weeks before we left for Afghanistan, and the female Chase after a friend and fellow LT who was killed in an IED blast a few months ago. I knew these two grateful and playful Afghan puppies would be good way to remember two brave patriots who served their country. One who served his country with such dedication that he gave his life in Afghanistan for the service of his nation."
The puppies, along with the other members of the Magnificent Seven, were able to be safely transported to the Nowzad shelter.
Then, thanks to the generosity of one of our wonderful donors, they were able to be shipped out of Afghanistan before Christmas. Since their soldier is still serving in Afghanistan, the puppies were sent to live with his mother in Florida. They will be waiting there for their soldier when he returns.
The puppies arrived in fine shape in late December.
“The puppies arrived safe and soundly! What wonderful, gentle, lovable creatures. Mario came out of the kennel immediately and did rather well until the wet towel and baby wipes came out! Chase was rather shy and had to be coaxed out with a piece of food at a time. She followed the trail of kibble till we got her completely out of the cage!”
Here is another update from their soldier’s mother, who is caring for them:
“Their life has completely changed over the last few days and they are thriving so!
Chase came to us quite skittish of people. Since her arrival a short six days ago; she takes daily walks and greets almost every person she walks up to! If there are several humans around and she begins to feel uncomfortable; she gently walks me away from the crowd!
Both puppies are learning quickly!! They have already learned sit and wait... Ok, the wait needs some work!! :-)
They love the car!
Mario is a wonderful, loyal pup! He watches his sister like a hawk, and he did something I have never seen a dog do! They were laying on one of the dog beds and Chase wanted his bone and was fussing at him. She would not stop! He picked it up and walked over and gave it to her!! Then took his nose and nudged it closer to her!! What a good boy!!! Most unselfish thing I have ever seen a dog do!!!”
Mario and Chase’s homecoming is truly a gift -- not just to them, but to the military who valued them so much they tried all they could to get them out.
The words of the soldiers who saved these dogs tells us how important these rescues are:
“With the hardships that have come with this deployment, this one act of kindness -- saving the dogs that have done so much for us – is one of the most rewarding things we have been able to do.”