Together Miles and his Dad, Brian, a retired Military Veteran host "Walk & Roll" events to rais money and spread awareness for not for profit organizations. They alternate between pet rescues and military veteran organizations. Brian is a retired US Air Force Military Working Dog handler who recently retired after 20 years of service. Together Brian and Miles are continuing to make a difference to the communities around them. We asked Brian to share more about Miles and their special bond:
Miles' Rescue Tail
Miles is an amazing Rottweiler we adopted from the Humane Society of Charles County. His personality makes everyone he meets so happy, we love to tell his story. Miles is very outgoing and happy all the time. We call him the Mayor of the street we live on, because he has to say hello to everyone, our neighbors stop their cars when we walk and get out to pet him or roll the window down to say hello. He loves to go on our weekend adventures to local attractions around our area. We meet many people in our area who follow him on his social media, he loves to get pets and take pictures with each of them.
Why a Dog Wheelchair Made the Difference
Being gifted a Walkin' Pets Wheelchair has been a life changer for Miles in so many ways. It gives him the ability to go with us on all of our adventures to breweries, wineries, restaurants and parks. When we first adopted Miles he had little to no use of his rear legs, but with the daily walks in his Walkin' Pets wheelchair his rear legs have gained strength and he can now stand and walk 5-10 feet on his own now and then. Although he will never be able to go on a walk or travel without the chair, we find the Walkin' Pets wheelchair very easy to travel with and he absolutely loves it.
Caring for a Differently-Abled Pet
Considering adopting a special needs pet? Most important is to be sure you are ready for the responsibility of taking care of a differently abled pet. While many things will be the same there are added expenses and care that must be talked about prior to adopting.
After we met Miles we asked the foster coordinator if we could have the night to talk about it. They were very happy to allow us time to talk. We went to dinner to talk and planned out every worst case scenario, from walks to possible bathroom issues. We noticed very quickly we were looking for solutions to possible issues and not a reason to not foster and adopt. In many ways caring for a special needs pet is much the same as any other pet, but with some extra things needing to be considered. As with any pet setting a routine is important, but even more important with a special needs pet.
You must have patience when doing different things and plan ahead. If you have a pet that needs a wheelchair, going on a walk is not as easy as just letting them outside to go to the bathroom or putting them on a leash. Miles learned the routine in a few days for going on a walk/roll and returning from a walk/roll. We stick to the same process every time we go out and come back to our home. If you have a special needs pet, you have to be ready to talk about them. Miles is 90 pounds and when we are out he gets a lot of attention in his chair. People always ask why he needs the chair, we always take the time to talk and answer their questions.
A Truly Special Best Friend
We feel it is important to help them understand he is just like any other dog, he just has some extra cool wheels to help get him around. Training is also very important, just because the pet is differently abled, does not mean they do not need training to understand acceptable and unacceptable behaviors. Overall, as with any pet, they want unconditional love and support.
Living with a special needs pet is amazing. Miles has truly blessed us and helped us slow down and enjoy every day. I feel we are much more structured with our everyday routine. He just wants love and to be part of everything we do. Having a special needs pet is very motivational in ways, Miles does not let his disabilities slow him down at all and I feel that transfers to us, we may feel like we can't do something, but then look at him overcoming so much with a never quit attitude, I know it gets me up and going wanting to be better.