He didn’t believe it
Antony didn’t believe what he was reading. His hands trembled as he held the letter. He looked at the Labrador’s sad eyes. A few words really played his heart. The words were “final” and “never see him again”.
He was disgusted that he was going to take this dog back to the shelter a moment ago. This dog was special.
A new beginning
After moving to a new town far from his friends and family, Antony couldn’t help but feel lonely. With his new home, he thought it was the perfect opportunity to find a canine companion. It seemed like a fate, the local animal shelter had a labrador in need of a home.
Antony was so excited to bring home his soon-to-be pet. What he didn’t know, however, was that once this Labrador entered his life, his life would change drastically.
Antony knew it was over when he first looked at Reggie. He thought the Labrador was the cutest and wondered why no one else had rushed to adopt this lovely puppy.
It seemed that Reggie just wasn’t right for anyone else. Antony felt a connection with Reggie and really wanted to adopt him. Would he be able to take him home?
The shelter gave Antony two weeks with Reggie to see if he had the right environment for the pup. Antony was nervous that Reggie wouldn’t like her new surroundings.
Antony was busy driving Reggie home, indulging in the thought of keeping this new companion forever. It would really help him and now he needed it. Unfortunately, things didn’t go perfectly as Antony had hoped for.
What was wrong?
Reggie didn’t want to play, he didn’t respond to training, and he just spun around sadly. Antony didn’t understand, he tried for hours to get something out of Reggie. But he seemed like a stubborn dog.
Antony was at a loss as to why the dog hadn’t liked him. All of the dogs Antony grew up with responded well when you treated them well. Antony had to figure out what the problem might be before the two weeks were over.
What should I do
Everything Antony tried was answered with no answer. The dog just didn’t click with him. His dreams of keeping Reggie seemed to collapse right in front of him. He would have to take him back to the shelter soon, but then he noticed something.
What he discovered would turn his world upside down.
In the box
Antony suddenly remembered that when the shelter gave Reggie, they also gave him an old wooden box. He tried his best to find it, just in case there was something that would help him understand this dog.
He found the box by the door, where he put it on the day he got Reggie. Among the contents were some old toys, a sleeping mat, and a sealed letter. Antony was curious about this letter. He would never expect what he would find.
Unsealing the letter
Antony took the letter out of the box and pressed it to his chest. Suddenly Reggie stirred and looked at him, his puppy eyes tugging at Antony’s heart.
Antony really hoped the letter contained some information that would help him get to know Reggie a little better. He was very surprised at what he would find when he opened the envelope.
Antony began reading the letter: “If you are reading this, it means I have just returned from my last drive with my lab after dropping it off at the shelter. He knew something was different. Let me tell you about my lab, hoping it will help you connect with him and him with you. “
Antony has been happy so far, his hopes for useful information in the letter seemed confirmed. The letter told him that Reggie loved tennis balls and would try to fit as many into his mouth as possible. But Antony hadn’t expected the letter to take a turn. There was a warning in the letter.
“No matter where you throw the balls, he’ll bounce afterwards so be careful – really don’t do it on any street. I made this mistake once and it almost cost dearly. “
Antony realized he had missed some old green tennis balls in the box. When he picked one up, Reggie immediately jumped up and started wagging her tail. Antony was amazed at the energy the dog had. Little did Antony know that things would take a turn for the stranger.
Teach him tricks
The sleeping mat also worked and he snuggled into it. There was also useful information about previous training techniques. “He knows ‘ball’ and ‘food’ and ‘bones’ and ‘treating’ as if it’s nobody’s business. I trained Reggie on little treats. Nothing opens its ears like small pieces of hot dog. “
But the next piece of advice Antony read hit hard.
A heartbreaking revelation
“Finally give him some time. I’ve never been married before so it was just Reggie and I for his entire life. He’s gone everywhere with me so please include him in your daily car trips if you can. It will be tough. And so I have a little more information to share with you. “
Antony wasn’t expecting what the owner would say next.
“His name is not Reggie. Its real name is Tank. Because that’s how I drive. “It turns out the previous owner was a soldier stationed in Iraq.
Antony was speechless at the truth. But things were going to get even more heartbreaking.
Further questions answered
Having no family friends to leave Tank with, he had to leave him at an animal shelter.
The letter was signed by a Paul Mallory, and as soon as Antony read the name he knew it sounded familiar, but then a terrible feeling hit the pit of his stomach.
A household name
He’d heard the name for the first few months at Antony’s new home.
There was a story about a young man who would have received a Silver Star for heroically saving three fellow soldiers during his mission in Iraq – and unfortunately about a soldier who had not made it home.
Go get it
Antony looked at the Labrador and whispered, “Tank?” The dog’s tail wagged, ears perked up, and he came in to cuddle. The transformation was amazing. Antony couldn’t believe it!
He was glad he found the letter from Panzer’s previous owner, but what he read next would leave him speechless.
Antony took all the tennis balls out of the box and threw them down the hall.
As Tank jumped around with excitement, he quickly got up behind them, Antony read the last part of the letter and his heart shattered into a million pieces.
A good night kiss
“Good luck with Tank. Give him a good home and give him an extra kiss goodnight – every night – from me. Thank you”
Of all the dogs, Antony had landed with this one. A fallen hero’s best friend. Tank returned … with three tennis balls in his mouth.
There have been several articles discussing whether or not this story is true. Other than inconsistencies about the letter not being opened earlier, database searches have not found anyone matching Mallory’s description, and there is no record of any Silver Star belonging to that name.
However, there is one thing that everyone agrees on.
A happy ending
Tank’s story doesn’t have to be true to be important or impactful. There are countless soldiers who have had to give up their pets. Duty dogs and guardian angels for the soldier’s pet are places that will help in grooming or finding a forever home.
Take it. You might find a special friend and grant someone else’s wish.