Soldier Not Allowed To Bring Puppy Home

October 15, 2008

Over the course of the past year, we’ve read of different Soldiers who brought puppies and dogs they’d adopted in Iraq, back home with them. If you all recall, the author of Eighty Deuce On The Loose In Iraq worked hard to bring Charlie home and was able to successfully do so.

Currently, there is a Soldier who is struggling with the fact that the Army has told her that she’s not allowed to bring her dog Ratchet back with her from Iraq. Sgt. Gwen Beberg recently emailed her mom telling her how much she misses her dog since they’ve been separated. She’s scheduled to return to the US next month.

“I just want my puppy home,” she said in the email. “I miss my dog horribly.”1

Many people online, who’ve never met Beberg before are rallying to her aid. Over 10,000 people have signed an online petition that urges the Army to reconsider letting the Iraqi puppy come home to Minnesota with Beberg. The fears are that Ratchet may be killed if he’s left behind. Unlike in the US, where dogs and cats are considered pets and often a person’s best friend, the Iraqi’s view dogs and cats as nuisances and carriers of disease, and will kill them. The program coordinator for Operation Baghdad Pups, which is operated by the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals International has left enroute to the Middle East, in hopes of being able to bring the puppy home. Even Beberg’s Congressman, Keith Ellison has written a letter to the Army, urging them to review the case and allow Beberg to bring the puppy home.

Ratchet was rescued by Beberg and a fellow Soldier when they noticed him in a pile of burning trash in May. Rules by the Defense Department prohibit Soldiers from adopting pets. However, as we know, many have done so anyway and there have been exceptions made to the rule and Soldiers have been allowed to bring dogs and even cats home with them. According to Operation Baghdad Pups, they have been able to assist in bringing home 50 dogs and 6 cats in the past 8 months alone.

“I’m coping reasonably well because I refuse to believe that Ratchet has been hurt,” Beberg wrote in the email to her mother. “If I find out that he was killed though - well, we just won’t entertain that possibility.2

If you’d like more information about the work that Operation Baghdad Pups does, please visit their website at the link provided below. If you’d like to sign the petition that is being circulated online to bring Ratchet out of Iraq, that link will be provided below as well.

Operation Baghdad Pups

Petition to Bring Ratchet to the US

  1. []
  2. []


Got something to say?