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The Military Working Dog Retirement Act Of 2015

20150728-mwda2015

In June, an amendment to title 10, United States Code, to require that military working dogs be retired in the United States, and for other purposes was introduced.  Named the Military Working Dog Retirement Act of 2015, the act would allow military working dogs overseas to be retired in the United States, unless they are adopted by a United States citizen who is living abroad.  The legislation helps to support Veterans and military dog handlers by ensuring that military working dogs come home to the United States after they have been relieved from their service in combat roles overseas.

The Defense Department estimates there are about 2,000 dogs currently working in the various branches of the military. United States military dogs are used in combat to sniff for roadside bombs and other explosive devices. Retired military dogs can require special care upon retirement and trained handlers often can best accommodate those unique needs.

As of right now, it is commonplace for the dog to be retired at it’s last assignment and the adoption is conducted locally or servicemembers have to pay for the costs associated with getting the dog to the United States. Retiring the military working dogs within the United States will make it much more likely that the dog’s handlers will be able to adopt the dog and stay together after their time in the service together.

Witht the The Military Working Dog Retirement Act of 2015 , the U.S. Government would be responsible for the costs associated with the transportation of military working dogs to the United States for retirement.  The Military Working Dog Retirement Act of 2015 has yet to pass the Senate and even after approval in the Senate, would still have to go before the President for signature before it becomes law.  Once signed by the President, the Military Working Dog Act of 2015 will only apply to retirements of military working dogs pursuant to section 2583 of title 10, United States Code, that occur on or after that date it is effective.

You can read about the Military Working Dog Retirement Act of 2015 on congress.gov.

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