Former Marine May Be Forced to Euthanize His Therapy Dog

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A former Marine called Tyler Kelly diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) may find himself forced into putting down his therapy dog, Thor.  Thor is being accused of attacking and killing a few chickens on a neighboring farm, and also going after a cow on the property.  Now, King George County Animal Control is pushing to have the dog euthanized.

Kelly’s plan was to have Thor trained and certified to be a therapy dog.  Along with PTSD, Kelly also has bi polar disorder, and is suffering from kidney disease.  All of these were discovered while at boot camp back in 2013.  Ever since, Thor has filled a hole in his life that simply can’t be properly explained with words.

“He’s the only one that’s been there when nobody [else] was,” Kelly said.  “Every night that I have my hard nights, hard times, he’s right there, by my side.”

Thor, in his own way, has been acting as a therapy dog for Kelly for a while now.  He may not be fully trained and certified to wear the therapy dog vest, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t use some of his innate instincts that a great deal of dogs seem to have for detecting human emotions.  Thor comforts Kelly in times of extreme anxiety and stress, and even helps him get out of the house every once in a while and into public.  Something that without Thor, might not happen at all.

“If they do put him down, they’re going to be killing a part of me too,” Kelly said.

Thor is in the situation in which he finds himself, because he’s been accused of killing chickens that resided on a farm near his home.  He’s also accused of going after a cow.  The owner of the farm called King George County Animal Control to complain, and Thor was taken in by them.  Kelly doesn’t believe that Thor would kill anything, and was more than likely trying to get the cow to play, if he was over at the farm at all.

“I get a call the other day saying the only option I have is to put him down,” Kelly said.  “I don’t think that’s very fair.  That dog would never hurt a fly.  I’ve taken him all kinds of places.  He’s been around so many dogs, cats, people, kids.”

Kelly is now awaiting a final decision from animal control.  They refused to make any comment on the matter, saying they wouldn’t do so while the investigation was ongoing.

4.14.16 - Thor