There were some concerns about Trigger, prior to his arrival. I'm aware that dogs coming from other countries can have issues. Trigger was used to walking primarily on sand. Here he would be on concrete, tile, carpet, etc. That change can cause great stress in an animal.
Trigger was a free agent on the military base. He was never on a leash or even wore a collar, things that are standard here in the States. He lived amongst soldiers. Here, he would have to integrate with children, dogs, cats and whomever else was in his soldiers' civilian life.
There was a small expectation of this dog arriving in the U.S. as a basket of nerves.
He got off the plane. Sniffed around. Then flopped on his back for a belly rub. There were no nerves. No break down. No shaking, no growling - nothing but an open heart and that puppy enthusiasm all dog owners rejoice in.
It was also evident, within an hour of being here that this soldier devoted a lot of time to his dog. Trigger is housebroken. He sits, stays, knows down and gives paw. He took to having a collar and walking on a leash just fine. He welcomes every human he sees with a wagging tail and gives up his belly for a rub in a heartbeat.
Trigger enjoys the company of dogs. He doesn't startle easily and will eat anything put in front of him. Quite frankly, he like every other canine camper here.
On some level I always wonder if rescue dogs know what humans have done for them and are subsequently eternally grateful for it. Or maybe dogs who have been through the wringer just understand what love is and what a good situation means for them. Regardless, Trigger is a rock star.
Speaking of rock star, Trigger received quite a bit of media attention. As with most things media related, not all the facts put out there were accurate. While I lack the time and initiative to address all the inaccuracies, I do want to clear a couple of things up:
Guardians of Rescue facilitated Trigger coming over, not me. It was their hardwork and resources that got him to the US and subsequently to Hounds Town - Port Jeff.
Trigger is not in a "rehab clinic." I will not be administering methadone and getting Trigger off his latest bender. My staff in Port Jeff and I are merely getting him accustomed to living amongst different kinds of people, situations and dogs.
Lastly, by way of addressing those who have said, "Oh my God - all that time and money for a dog?" I say, it isn't just about the dog (you jack ass). It's about letting members of the military (remember them? the ones who fight for the freedom you have to sit on your fat butt at the computer, making disparaging remarks) know that we see how hard they work and appreciate it. Bringing home their companions is really the least we can do.