This little 13-week-old handsome guy is the newest puppy of the New York Islanders.
He’s part of the “Puppy with a Purpose” initiative, a program sponsored by America’s VetDogs to raise service dogs for military veterans, active-duty service members and first responders.
Jethro, whose name pays homage to the beloved late Islanders legend Clark Gillies, will be spending part of the next 16-18 months with the team for his basic training and socialization. He’ll also be at public events, including select Islanders’ outings and home games.
After his training, the yellow Labrador Retriever will return to America’s VetDogs in Smithtown for formal service dog training with a Certified Service Dog Instructor. He will then be given to a veteran or first responder with disabilities at no cost.
This is the fourth puppy the Isles will have helped train.
“This partnership exemplifies our dedication to providing life-changing assistance to those who have served our country and first responders who risk their lives every day,” said John Miller, president and CEO of America’s VetDogs. We look forward to the impact this partnership will have on the lives of those in need and the continued support from the Islanders organization and their passionate fans.”
The cost to breed, raise, train, and place one assistance dog is over $50,000, but all VetDogs’ services are provided at no charge. If you’re interested in donating, click here.
Here is where the other three Isles dogs are now:
- They placed a guide dog in training named Monte with Long Island native Tom Ryan
- The Islanders also placed their second dog, Tori, with U.S. Navy Veteran and NYFD Officer Robert Roberto
- The first dog, Radar, was successfully placed as a guide dog in August 2020 with gold medalist Paralympian swimmer and Long Island native Anastasia Pagonis
To keep up with Jethro, check out his Instagram below.
Top: Little Jethro making friends at one of his first Islanders games. (Credit: Instagram/nyislespup)