Radio host Bobby Bones is arguably one of the most famous names in the music industry, and is now giving his name and support to a worthwhile cause. The Arkansas native is partnering with Purina Dog Chow, as part of their Service Dog Salute campaign, to help veterans with PTSD and other disorders get service dogs. The campaign, which is held in September, is one Bones is proud to stand behind.
"Well, on our show, we've worked with veterans for a long time, for a lot of reasons," Bones told PopCulture.com. "From building them houses to even buying them service dogs. I had no idea that the service dogs cost $20,000 each, just to get a dog, to train it, to do all of that. So we've been working on the show for such a long time, because what happens is they go and they fight or they're overseas and they come back and they're not equipped to live the life without these dogs. And so we've kind of figured it out on the show and our listeners jumped in.
"We started buying dogs while Purina has a similar deal going, so we combined our forces," he added. "They have a deal with [Purina] Dog Chow where if you buy Dog Chow with a specially marked tag, it goes to help match them up with service dogs. So it's just kind of keeping in brand of what we're trying to do and Purina's doing the same thing and we're all trying to give back to those who go out and serve us and we get to be free because of them."
Bones has personally gotten to meet some of the veterans who have been helped by service dogs, thanks to the initiative, including one who worked for former President Bill Clinton.
"He flew in from California with his dog," the reigning Dancing With the Stars winner recalled. "He had been one of the Clinton's bodyguards and had seen a bunch of crazy stuff and we were with him. Even if he's in a crowded place, somebody makes a loud noise, he's been trained to be hypersensitive, and always being around and trying to see what's happening. So for him it startles him constantly, and so the dog is good for his anxiety and also when he has nightmares, he was saying that the dog can feel it and gets up on him and lays on him. Which I thought was wild.
"Everything he'd been training hard to do, you kind of have to un-train yourself and it's not that easy once you get back," he continued. "We have dogs that we follow all the way through the training process on our show. So we find these dogs. They named the last batch after all of us on the show, so we'll see Raymundo and how he's going through training, and they end up matching him with a vet. It's pretty awesome to see."
For every specially-marked bag of Dog Chow purchased through November 1, Dog Chow will make a donation, up to $100,000, to Tony La Russa's Animal Rescue Foundation for their Pets and Vets program, which helps match veterans with service dogs, free of charge.
To find out more about the Service Dog Salute campaign, visit Dogchow.com/service.
Photo Credit: Getty / Gabe Ginsberg