A Buddy Bag is essentially a first-aid kit for MWDs that contains equipment to help them if they are injured in the field. Items like an O2 mask specifically designed for dogs, bandages, wraps, splints, wound cleaning supplies, trauma pads, gloves and more are included. Military dog handlers are most always the dogs’ first responder for their K9. When a Buddy Bag is donated to a police or fire department, that unit is then given in-depth training from a qualified, licensed veterinarian. Each respondent receives hands-on training with the provided equipment. Rescuers are taught to administer oxygen, perform first-aid, administer life-saving drugs, how to use supplies already on hand and how to safely transport their injured K9 companion.
The Buddy Bag donated in our honor (by Ms. Frank and her adorable Scottish Terrier, Bella Rose) went to Oakley, a MWD in Ludlow, Kentucky. Oakley’s story is too incredible not to share! He was located in a Kentucky Animal Shelter when he was only 11 months old. He had been given up because his previous owners thought he was too “aggressive” for them to handle. The shelter was going to put him down because they were afraid of adopting out a German Shepherd Dog that has a working dog mentality and drive. His handler happened to be at the shelter that night and learned of Oakley’s situation. It was determined that Oakley was not truly aggressive, but rather had been mistreated and had developed some social issues. With proper training and patience it was decided that he just might make a great police dog. Today, Oakley is doing great! He is almost finished with his narcotics training and goes to work with his handler every day. The city of Ludlow has been very supportive of this endeavor and the citizens have fallen in love with him and his story. Oakley should be hitting the streets later this month for narcotics detection work and will then start his training in tracking and handler protection.
TAH would like to express our deep thanks to Ms. Frank for this beautiful and thoughtful gift that is not only helping a dog who protects his community, but also sheds light on this wonderful program. We absolutely adore Bella Rose and are honored to be part of her care!
If you would like to learn more about Buddy Bags and the K9 Defender Fund, please visit www.k9defenderfund.org.