Tiger — Service

Location: Lansing, Michigan

It was not my intention to get a dog when I went into the Paris Animal Shelter.

My emotional support animal of eight years had died unexpectedly, and with the loss my clinical depression spiraled out of control. I stopped eating, stopped taking care of myself, and eventually my mother confronted me. I had to do something to fight off my mental health decline.

So I started volunteering at my local animal shelter, and hadn’t even gotten a day in before meeting this sad little pup. With a half shaved head, stitches in one ear, and a quiet disposition, something about him called to me. All it took was one walk, and I knew he had to come home with me.

I wasn’t much of dog person, so I had no idea what I was doing when I got him. I had to learn the basics, have a trainer evaluate him for service work, and learn where to go from there. From a dog on code red, having been in the shelter for two months, Tiger has become my hero. Whenever we would hit an obstacle in training and I would start to doubt him and his potential, he would prove me wrong and help me through another hard patch.

He’s an amazing dog that’s been on a wild journey, and I believe he’s earned the title of American Hero.

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