Adopting a Retired Military Working Dog!

Ronie Uncategorized 7 Comments

If you know me, you know I’ve fallen completely in love with the amazing canines who are serving in our country’s armed forces! I’ve had an awesome time writing about MWDs in the A Breed Apart series, but now, our family is bringing it a little (okay…a LOT) closer to home. As in, right into our home!


In April 2013, we knew our 12.5 year old Golden Retreiver was approaching her final days, so we went ahead and filled out the MWD application via Lackland’s site. Their projected wait time of 12-18 months told us we have plenty of time to let Daisy enjoy her final days.
Thanks to the amazing help of two wonderful ladies (thank you, Kristie and Lydia!!), our application came to the attention of the adoption coordinator at Lackland. At the time, she informed us that we are REQUIRED to have a fence (something we hadn’t inferred from the application) and since we were willing to install one, as soon as we had that done, she would pair us with a dog.

So, 6 weeks and a several thousand dollars later, our fence went up. Now, the yard seemed especially lonely and empty without a dog. We notified the coordinator that we were ready with our fence. What we didn’t know is the coordinator was the ONLY person handling the enormous task of coordinating ALL retired MWD adoptions…and she was on leave in January for medical reasons.

FINALLY…this morning, she called me. “I have a dog for you,” are six words that will resonate in my head forever. His name is Vvolt, and he is a 5 year old Belgian Malinois, bred right there at Lackland. For those curious what a Malinois looks like, TRINITY on the cover of Trinity: Military War Dog is a Belgian Malinois. Here is a picture of a Malinois:

Belgian Malinois (left) and German Shepherd (right)

Belgian Malinois (left) and German Shepherd (right)

Our adoption date is March 10, and I will be traveling from Northern Virginia down to San Antonio to welcome retired MWD Vvolt into our home and lives! Stay tuned for pictures of Vvolt and our journey to giving this four-legged hero a comfortable, loving home!

Comments 7

  1. Abbi Hart

    Congratulations!! This is awesome news and I am crazy excited for you! I loved your A Breed Apart series (as well as your other books!) and I think it is so cool that you are adopting a MWD! Can’t wait to see pictures and hear stories!!

  2. Angie Arndt

    When I took a police academy course with our local sheriff’s office, I got to hug a Malinois (yes, I asked first). If the were all like that one, they are sweet, expressive and so lovable! So glad that Vvolt retires to such a good home. 🙂

  3. ralph culbert

    I am interested in adopting any mwd that has not yet been adopted and is in jeopardy on losing his/her battle..I love my country and all who serve even the dogs….I am a veteran of the United States Navy. thank you for your time

    1. Post
  4. Adrian

    Even though I’m in the Caribbean, how would I go about adopting a retired MWD… The Belgium MALINOIS… I’m a lover of dogs… Love them until dear. Not a car person so, let me know thank you!!!! Great website by the way

  5. Antonio (Tony) Gomez

    Hello. My name is, Antonio {Tony} Gomez. I would like to get information on how to adopt a MWD that is in jeopardy being terminated. I am actually looking for a service dog. I hope that you can direct me to the proper channels.

    Thank you,
    Antonio (Tony) Gomez
    Cpl, USMC, Disabled Retired

    1. Post

      Hello, Sir. To my knowledge, thanks to a law signed by former President Clinton, the vast majority of retired MWDs are adopted out and not euthanized (a rare number may be if they are too aggressive and would not be suitable in a civilian setting). Also, be aware that retired MWDs are not adopted to homes with young children, due to the high probably the dog will have aggression training. If you want to adopt a retired MWD, I would suggest you apply through either or (the latter mostly places contract working dogs, not US military dogs). You can find several organizations by Googling. Unfortunately, true service/therapy dogs are not something Im’ familiary with, though I would recommend Canine Companions for Independence.

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