‘Life by 1,000 Hugs’ | Speaker.gov

National Pet Day is the perfect day to recognize the thousands of service dogs that help America’s disabled veterans and active duty personnel.

Posted by Speaker Paul Ryan on Tuesday, April 11, 2017

In case you haven’t heard, it’s #NationalPetDay—which is the perfect occasion to share a little color from one of Speaker Ryan’s meetings last month.

In March, America’s VetDogs—an organization that provides guide, service, and specialized therapy dogs to America’s disabled veterans and active duty personnel—made a visit to the Capitol. Dedicated to our men and women in uniform, America’s VetDogs is one of the many organizations that gives back to those who protect us at home and ensure our safety abroad.

Speaker Ryan sat down with the organization’s CEO, two veterans—Joe and Melanie—and a service dog named Liberty to hear more about the organization’s mission. During the meeting, the speaker learned a lot about what these dogs are trained to do, like providing help with daily life activities to more specific challenges. In fact, Liberty, pictured above, is trained to contact 911 should she find her owner, Melanie, unresponsive. Pretty amazing, isn’t it?

As Joe described it, life alongside his dog, Benjamin, is like “life by 1,000 hugs.” Speaker Ryan appreciated the opportunity to learn more about one of the many groups that give veterans nationwide a second chance at health, happiness, and recovery.

Have your own #NationalPetDay story? Tweet us at @SpeakerRyan—pictures encouraged.