If you own a dog, maybe this scenario sounds all too familiar. Your canine follows you into the kitchen, out to the car, onto the couch, even into the bathroom.
Sometimes, it seems like you can’t get a single moment of solitude. Then you realize that your furry friend’s behavior reflects an overwhelming sense of profound love and loyalty.
Our faithful pups remain steadfastly by our side through life’s most challenging moments. That goes double, or even triple, for military dogs.
Marine veteran Chad Migkins can tell you something about this. And if he could talk, Migkins’ canine partner Dini would probably echo similar sentiments.
Local television station WDBJ reported that Migkins was recently reunited with Dini in Roanoke, Virginia. The two worked side-by-side while Migkins served overseas in Japan.
As Dini’s original military K-9 handler, Migkins forged quite a bond with his cold-nosed companion. Each would routinely watch out for the other.
“Being service members, you know, you can get down on yourselves really quickly and things can start to spiral out of hand,” Migkins told WDBJ. “I was blessed and fortunate enough to be able to rely on Dini, and he’d always be there for me.”
But once Migkins left Japan, the U.S. Marine Corps became responsible for Dini. The heartbroken soldier worried that he might never see his devoted dog again.
Then, the Texas-based non-profit Mission K9 Rescue got involved. The organization’s website explains that its ongoing objective is “to rescue, reunite, re-home, rehabilitate and repair any retired working dog that has served mankind in some capacity.”
Migkins was subsequently notified that he would most certainly be seeing Dini once again, and relatively soon.
“These guys, they served together, they were on the front line together, they protected each other and when they’re separated, I think a piece of them is apart,” said Kristen Maurer, president of Mission K-9. “So whenever we’re allowed to reunite them like this, you can kind of see that piece get put back together.”
Migkins admitted that he felt apprehensive for several weeks leading up to the big reunion. The veteran said he kept asking himself unsettling questions like, “What if he doesn’t remember me? What if he doesn’t like me anymore?”
But the magical moment took place in short order, and it was captured on camera by CBS News.
The ultimate verdict? “It was probably the best moment I’ve had in my life,” Migkins said.
The grateful soldier explained that on the duo’s first evening back together, “He just sat there you know, and just cuddled up with me the whole time, and he wouldn’t let me go anywhere, if I went to the bathroom he’d come with me, if I went to the fridge to get water, he’d be right there beside me.”
Nate Jennings is the founder of Moto Men, a charitable motorcycle club helping to raise funds that support Mission K9’s noble cause. He witnessed the touching reunion, and described it as “an amazing experience.”
“That’s what we’re all here for,” Jennings explained, “working with organizations and great veterans who have served our country, and reuniting them.”
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