On Thursday, June 29th, members of the Pet Food Experts team traveled to Oak Glen, Minnesota to attend the Chuck & Don's Golf Tournament. Brandon Cooke, Rusty Hawes, and Tom Ek joined the Chuck & Don's team and members of the vendor community at Oak Glen Golf Club to support a number of local organzations, including Pets Loyal 2 Vets, Leech Lake Legacy, and Midwest Animal Rescue & Services.
L-R: Brandon Cooke (Midwest Key Accounts Rep), Rusty Hawes (Midwest Regional Manager), Tom Ek (Territory Manager)
Pets Loyal 2 Vets is dedicated to connecting Minnesota Military Veterans diagnosed and treated with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), traumatic brain injury (TBI), or physical assault trauma with specially trained, companion, therapy, and psychiatric service dogs at no cost. It's estimated that 1 in 5 veterans out of 1.2 million returning home from serving the country will have some form of PTSD or TBI, leading to an empidemic of service-connected suicides and self-inflicted injuries.
It's been proven that well-trained companion/therapy or Psychiatric Service Dogs have a distinct calming effect on humans which helps open up stronger communication channels, family support, emotional well-being and a more enjoyable life. Pets Loyal 2 Vets helps veterans adopt well-trained, certified dogs to qualifying veterans to help ease the pain associated with depression, anxiety, or attempts to inflict self harm and increase their quality of life.
Leech Lake Legacy is an animal welfare organization that empowers Native American communities to enrich the lives of animals by providing resources and sharing information. In 2011, it was discovered that that resources were very limited for the Leech Lake Tribal Police who managed the impound and there was not a program in place to re-home the animals that were brought into the impound as surrenders or strays.
Jenny Fitzer and Marilou Chanrasmi began to transport dogs in the impound to rescues and shelters in the Twin Cities to be vetted, spayed/neutered, and placed up for adoption. They later discussed what could be done to provide the greatest assistance to the animals of Leech Lake Reservation, and together they founded Leech Lake Legacy.
Midwest Animal Rescue & Services (MARS) is a dedicated and passionate group who rescues dogs and cats that are at risk and homeless through no fault of their own. Once in MARS' care, these companion animals are vaccinated, microchipped, and spayed or neutered. Special attention is provided for those animals that need additional time and medical care before going to a new home.
MARS is committed to helping pets in need whenever possible, including all breeds and ages. MARS does not have a shelter facility for boarding and instead run foster-based rescue group that runs on the support and aid of dedicated volunteers and supporters. The fostered pets live in homes as members of the family, receiving all of the love and care they would in an adoptive home, until they are adopted.
Thank you to our incredible team members for traveling out to Minnesota to support this wonderful event!