Animal rescue program pairs veterans with PTSD with dogs for free

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. -- For 29 years, the Animal Rescue Foundation, or ARF, has rescued more than 42,000 dogs and cats and helped them find their forever homes.

Now the foundation is expanding to help veterans with PTSD and other issues while saving the lives of dogs at the same time.

The non-profit is launching a program that would pair veterans to dogs in need of a home. ARF's co-founder and baseball icon Tony La Russa says this will help both people and pets who need companion and support, free of charge.

"The most unique thing about our program is that the veteran pays nothing. We pay all of it for the life of the dog," he said.

La Russa has had a Hall of Fame career in baseball, but he has also left his mark by dedicating much of his time to help save lives on both ends of the leash.

"Between our volunteers, our staff, the donors, the sponsors, they are all here because they believe in what we're doing and we are honor-bound not to let anybody down," he said.

ARF has recently acquired a new 8,000-square-foot space to help veterans train their new pets. Although the place is under construction, the old building still needs funding to fix its leaking ceilings.

There's a chance to donate and also meeting some of baseball's biggest stars. ARF is hosting "Sport Stars Raise the Roof" at the Concord Hilton to raise funding to pay for a new roof.

The event will be held on Saturday, Jan. 11. from 9:30 a.m. until 4 p.m., featuring autograph signings from baseball superstars Bruce Bochy, Buster Posey, Mark McGuire and many more.

You can visit ARF's website for more details.
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