Report: Army mismanages program for handlers to adopt service dogs

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Soldiers who handled service dogs overseas should have gotten the chance to adopt them but did not, and a report blasts the U.S. Army for failing to make that happen.

[9 investigates soldiers' claims Army broke promises to adopt their military dogs]

Veteran Brad Perry served in Afghanistan searching for improvised explosive devices with the help of his partner Bodi, a Tactical Explosive Detection Dog.

[LINK: Justice for TEDD Handlers Facebook page]

Perry said he was told he could adopt Bodi after his service but never got the chance.

“I wanted to be there for my dog the way he was for me but I couldn't,” Perry said.

An inspector general report reveals just how much the Army mismanaged the program and the adoption of those military dogs.

U.S. Rep. Richard Hudson, R-NC, has been pushing for answers for years.

The report said the Army did not give military handlers the first chance to adopt the dogs and did not properly document the adoptions or follow veterinarian recommendations or complete checks for suitable owners.

It also did not accurately track adoptions, according to the report.

“I’ve been screaming and banging on the desk saying, ‘This was wrong. It was mishandled,” Hudson said.

Hudson now says he wants to question the secretary of the U.S. Air Force.

“One question I have: The people who did wrong, are they going to be punished?” Hudson said.

The U.S. representative pushed for changes in the law so handlers now get the first chance to adopt military dogs.

Some civilian families who previously adopted TEDD dogs gave them to soldiers but Perry said Tuesday that the family who adopted Bodi won't let him see the dog.