Shelter Me: Friends with Vets

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Shelter Me: Friends with Vets. David Murphy reports during Action News at 9 a.m. on August 4, 2018.

Sonny Wimberly is a Vietnam War Veteran.

After 22 years in the reserves, he went in search of a service dog.

"The main difference between a companion animal, and a service dog is that a service dog performs tasks for their person," says Marissa Corbett, owner of Above and Beyond Dog Training.

The Friends with Vets program, run by One Love Animal Rescue and Above and Beyond Dog Training, pulls dogs from the shelter and trains them to work with vets.

It's how Sonny got connected with Juno.

"If I need my phone, I tell him. I come down here and I forget it, and tell him go get my phone. Juno will be back with the phone," says Sonny.

Sonny calls Juno one of the best gifts.

"It really gives us another purpose. Something better to think about," Sonny says.

"A lot of them need a reason to get up in the morning, and a reason to go outside. It forces them to be on routine," says Marissa.

It's beneficial to the pups as well.

"What it does is it gets dogs out of bad situations in the shelters, gets them into a training program. It also saves money for the county," says Dawn Hullings, co-founder of One Love Animal Rescue.

Whether you're looking for a service dog, or a companion animal, Charlotte is ready to qualify.

"She is a three-year-old Catahoula Terrier mix," says Dawn.

She came from a shelter in Virginia.

"Charlotte is kid and dog friendly. She's house and crate trained," Dawn says.

And she knows her basic commands.

"We call her turnkey ready, move in ready. And who can resist that spotted nose?" says Dawn.

For more, visit the One Love Animal Rescue website.

If you have a shelter story you'd like us to share, post a picture and some details on one of our social pages. Be sure to use the hashtag 6abc Shelter Me.

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