A sergeant in the US Army has finally been reunited with a puppy she took care of overseas after a nonprofit organization intervened to help. A story in the New York Post also assisted in bringing the pair back together.
Twenty-nine-year-old Sgt. Charity Webb was stationed in Europe while functioning as a military cook last fall when a stray dog began coming around the base and later gave birth to puppies. One of the puppies was very timid and hesitant to approach the soldiers, she says.
“I was like the one person that was able to hold her where she wouldn’t freak out or cry hysterically,” Webb said to The Post over the telephone on Tuesday.
“It just took weeks of like trying to get her more socialized and feeding her and showing her it’s OK to be around these big people. She was so tiny, she had just been born so she wasn’t used to all that.”
Webb explained that the area where she was stationed was not a good place for strays. She would usually have to keep the dog she named Pup Pup hidden away, along with the rest of the litter, from local dogcatchers who wouldn’t hesitate to take them.
“For the puppies, they just kill them off because there’s so many strays so we didn’t want them to get the puppies because we knew they’d kill them, there was no doubt about it,” the sergeant remarked.
Webb and Pup Pup soon became fast friends, and the dog helped her deal with being so far away from her family and friends, as well as her own dog back in the US, who is a miniature schnauzer by the name of Bruce.
“You miss your family, you’re missing Christmas, Thanksgiving all of that, so it was good to have her occupy my time and my mind and not think about my time away and stuff so she really did help with that,” Webb stated.
The soldier soon got a message that her deployment was coming to a close and she would need to come home, leaving her furry friend overseas where Webb was convinced she wouldn’t survive for very long, the sergeant indicated.
Someone serving with Webb let her know about the Long Island-based nonprofit Paws of War, which brings soldiers back together with the animals they cared for while on deployment once they return home.
“We don’t take a penny from any of the active military, we solely depend on donors,” Paws of War founder Robert Misseri reported to The New York Post, going on to say it costs on average $7,000 to rescue these animals from overseas.
Misseri was happy to assist Webb but the organization was having trouble raising money for the necessary expenses to complete the reunion before The Post did a piece on the soldier’s long-lost friend and her need for donations.
“Once The Post picked up the story, it not only raised enough money for Pup Pup but it raised enough money for a second dog,” Misseri revealed.
After several months apart, Webb and Pup Pup were brought back together again, this time at the soldier’s residence near Fort Campbell in Kentucky on Feb. 24.
“I didn’t know if she’d remember me but once she got around me and got in the house and stuff she was a completely chill dog, like how she was when she was a puppy,” Webb said.
“To the donors that made this happen, I just want to say thank you because without them a lot of animals that people have grown attached to would be like put down and I’m grateful for them,” Webb remarked.
“I’m so happy she’s happy here … she’s really good, she’s the sweetest dog.”