Sign In

A Veteran’s Service Dog

June 4, 2020

Port Charlotte Navy veteran Thomas Andrews says his dog, Chief, helps him get through the day.

“I’m one hundred percent on disability. I’ve got PTSD through the military so he’s actually a comfort dog to me,” he said.

So when his usually playful pup stopped moving around over the weekend, fear set in.

“He wasn’t walking, wasn’t doing nothing,” Andrews said. “I got rather nervous. As a veteran, I get paid [disability] once a month…I didn’t have any money at that time. I started calling around a bunch of vets to see if they would let me make payments on a vet bill and just about all of them I called said, ‘No, absolutely no.’”

That was until he called Burnt Store Animal Hospital.

“Dr. Justin Kerr didn’t even hesitate. He said, ‘Come on in,’” Andrews said.

That’s because Kerr is passionate about helping his heroes and their pets.

“My grandfather was in World War II on the D-Day beaches. They do so much to enable our best lives that we can just do anything we possibly can to give back at any point in time,” he said. “If I can help out a person and their pet, specifically one that’s put the ultimate sacrifice out there for us, then I’m happy to do so.”

Now, Andrews is happy to watch Chief recovering from his knee injury, thanks to a compassionate clinic.

“I’m just thankful,” he said.

Burnt Store Animal Hospital also offers standing discounts for all veterans and active duty, along with first responders in our area. Kerr says they want to thank those who enable us to live our best lives through their service.

Register Your Dog

  • Most Recent News

    Students Get Therapy Dog

    When middle school students return to class on Jan. 11, they’ll find a new face at the door: Daisy. Daisy is a therapy dog and the personal pet of Rob Kreger, principal of the Rock L. Butler Middle School. The five-year-old golden retriever is not a school pet or mascot, but rather a working dog […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dogtor

    Last March, Caroline Benzel, a third-year medical student, began to notice the stress and discomfort her nurse friends were feeling from the pressures of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. “[Personal protective equipment] can be really rough on the skin,” Benzel, 31, tells PEOPLE. Benzel and her 3-year-old Rottweiler, Loki (who’s also a therapy dog) hatched a […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dog Pups

    When Stanley the miniature fox terrier’s owner passed away, the little dog started a ‘paw-some’ new role – bringing puppy love to some of the Gold Coast’s oldest residents. After Carinity Cedarbrook Diversional Therapist Julianne Staff adopted Stanley, he began visiting the aged care community at Mudgeeraba as a therapy dog. Therapy dogs help to […]

    Read more

    Puppy Cams

    A nonprofit is providing an unusual form of therapy for those on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic – puppy cams! “You spend five minutes with a puppy and try not to smile,” said registered nurse Robin Lingg Lagrone. Lingg Lagrone says watching little furballs wag their tails and prance on their paws helps […]

    Read more

    Pet Committee

    When Moore County’s school doors were abruptly closed earlier in 2020, two- and four-legged volunteers from the Moore County Citizens’ Pet Responsibility Committee (PRC) were in their 12th year of presenting a six-session Pet Responsibility Education Program for fourth-graders. The PRC quickly shifted gears and placed its program materials online as part of a home […]

    Read more

    The Right Rescue Dog

    If your New Year’s resolution is to add a canine family member, good for you. Somewhere out there is the perfect puppy or adult dog for your family. You have a lot of things to think about when you begin to look for that new family member, puppy or dog? Large or small? Purebred or […]

    Read more