Ratchet is the name of the puppy who cannot go home with his owner.
It’s a bit more complex than you think.
It all started last May when a soldier in Iraq rescued the puppy from a burning pile of trash. Actually, this is not uncommon. Many soldiers have adopted pets while in Iraq.
This particular soldier, Sgt. Gwen Beberg, a decorated soldier, has been held by the military more than 15 months past her original commitment due to the stop–loss policy.
Well now the soldier is coming back home to Minnesota and the defense department says that she cannot bring her puppy with her. Defense Department rules prohibit soldiers in the U.S. Central Command, which includes Iraq, from adopting pets, but exceptions have been made. More than 10,000 people have signed an online petition urging the Army to let an Iraqi puppy come home with a the soldier.
“I just want my puppy home,” Sgt. Gwen Beberg of Minneapolis wrote to her mother in an e-mail Sunday from Iraq, soon after she was separated from the dog following a transfer. “I miss my dog horribly.” Beberg, 28, is scheduled to return to the U.S. next month.
Operation Baghdad Pups, which is run by Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals International, is mad. They have sent a delegate to the Middle East to try to get the puppy to the U.S. Operation Baghdad Pups says it has gotten 50 dogs and six cats transferred to the U.S. in the last eight months.
Congressman, Democrat Keith Ellison, wrote to the Army urging it to review the case.
www.baghdadpups.com and www.SPCA.com
Source: Eddie Wrenn/World News Online
Sgt. Beberg befriended puppy Ratchet while serving in Iraq, and sent regular dispatches to her home in Minneapolis charting the dog’s process, with 100s of fans tuning in on Facebook to follow the pup’s life.
Operation Baghdad Pups, a program run by SPCA International, which has the motto ‘No buddy gets left behind’, is pleading with the U.S. Army to allow Ratchet to fly out of the country – amid fears the dog will die if left behind.
Ratchet as a puppy
HOW YOU CAN HELP!
First, contact Minnesota senators and representatives (even if you’re not from here). Here are some details:
Ratchet is at Camp Striker in Iraq / 15 other dogs were allowed to leave with Baghdad Pups on the flight Ratchet was supposed to be on. / The base’s commanding officers seized Ratchet on his way to the airport. /
Ratchet has had his necessary vaccinations and is HEALTHY. / Ratchet needs a military release because the military is refusing to let him leave Iraq.
Calling is best because Senators and Representatives get thousands of emails. However, click here for a sample email if you prefer that.
Here is the Contact information for the MN Senators and Gwen’s Representative:
Senator Amy Klobuchar:
(888) 224-9043 -or- (612) 727-5220
Senator Norm Coleman:
(800) 642-6041 -or- (651) 645-0323
Representative Keith Ellison,
(West Twin Cities, Minneapolis)
MESSAGE FROM: 10:40 pm PDT, Oct 8, Gwen Beberg, Minnesota
“ THANK YOU TO EVERYONE SUPPORTING MY DOG!! I can’t get this done without the hundreds of people supporting me, nay, THOUSANDS! I am moved to tears. Thank you, over an over, for taking our story to heart and contributing to Ratchet’s wagging tail being the first thing to greet me when I go home!“
**Update: Amid reports that Ratchet was missing, Stephanie has let us know that Ratchet has been found by a fellow soldier. Although Ratchet’s exact location is unclear, Sgt. Beberg was told the dog is safe, for now. 10/13/08 5:09pm est
FYI: Is signing a petition effective? Yes! In general, the more a target organization is impacted by public opinion, the more effective are the petitions. ThePetitionSite enhances the credibility of online petitions by centralizing signature collection, structuring/regulating signature data collection and output, facilitating communication of petitions via fax, email, etc. Remember the effect of a petition usually goes far beyond the actual list of signatures. Journalists write stories about the petitions, signers get inspired to take additional actions, and other “potential targets” conform their behavior to avoid being a target. The more signatures the greater the impact!
Here’s a video of another soldier’s struggle to get their dog out of Iraq:
Soldier’s homecoming with his dogs
They simply can not do this without our financial support as well! The more we help, the more animals can be brought home! Thanks.
Operation Baghdad Pups Dedication video:
Source: Eddie Wrenn/World News Online