After being separated for years, an Air Force sergeant was reunited with his retired military K9

Air Force Sergeant Mike Alcala has a touching reunion with his former bomb-sniffing dog, John, for the holidays and is about to spend his entire life together after the latter’s retirement.

Human Americanwith puppy lovean organization that donates to help dogs get adopted, surprised the 10-year-old German Shepherd and Alcala at a pre-holiday get-together on Dec. 22 in San Antonio, Texas.

Puppie Love revealed that American Humane contacted them to ask if they would be interested in bringing military working dog (MWD) John home for retirement and for the holidays.

They wrote, “Of course we said yes! We donated $7,000 to help cover expenses as AH facilitated retired MWD John’s reunion with his handler.

“We are delighted to play a small role in his journey to a well-deserved retirement.” » Puppie Love continued.

During John’s eight-year career as an explosive detection dog, John worked with a total of seven handlers.

Of those seven, Alcala was the longest-serving retired military K9 handler, having worked together for three years, from September 2018 to September 2021 at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Hawaii.

However, they had to be separated when Alcala was assigned to another base. Talk to TODAYAlcala said leaving John was difficult.

“It was really difficult. Think about your dog at home if you have one. Just imagine walking through the door and leave them to someone else. It’s very sad, but you know they will be in good hands. Alcala said.

Alcala reveals TODAY that he made a promise to come back for John when the time was right.

“I told them when I left there, I said, ‘I’m coming back for this dog.’” Alcala said.

And that moment came just in time for the most magical time of the year (i.e. Christmas!) when John officially retired on December 20, 2023.

According to New York PostAlcala heard about John’s retirement and asked American Humane to help transport his best friend home so he could officially adopt him.

“I heard about American Humane from a friend of mine, so I thought I would reach out and see what they could do for me and John” » Alcala said during an interview with American Humane.

Before boarding his flight back to Texas, John was honored with a special retirement ceremony in Hawaii to celebrate his 8 long years of dedicated service.

The two men had their long-awaited reunion in the courtyard of Alcala’s home, with his wife and 10-month-old daughter.

Seeing John, Alcala scratched his ears playfully, saying: “I missed you buddy. Welcome home, buddy.

Dr. Robin Ganzert, president and CEO of American Humane, told Fox News Digital: “We owe a debt of gratitude to all America’s veterans, including retired military working dogs who serve our country.”

“Bringing John home for the holidays was the greatest gift we could give to these two military heroes,” » continued Ganzert.


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