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DYC Student Veteran Serves as Advocate for SPCA Paws & Patriots

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DYC Student Veteran Serves as Advocate for SPCA Paws & Patriots

DYC Student Veteran Serves as Advocate for SPCA Paws & Patriots

Waldo Rivera, a history major and military veteran, was recently highlighted for his success with the program.

Buffalo, New York – September 3, 2015 – Paws & Patriots is an SPCA program designed to engage the community in helping both Western New York's military veterans and the humane society's dogs and cats. In a recent SPCA newsletter, D'Youville student Waldo Rivera, a history major and Army/Air Force veteran was highlighted for his success with the SPCA program.

According to Rivera's story in the newsletter, he joined SPCA Paws & Patriots in 2013 after meeting the program director and companion dog, Augie, at the Connecticut Street Armory.

"When I saw Augie it was love at first sight, or at first paw I should say," said Rivera. "I have always been a dog lover but that guy just has a way of melting your heart unlike any other I have ever encountered."

Rivera, a veteran of both Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, has shared his success with Paws & Patriots with departments at D'Youville College. According to Rivera, "I have spoken to several departments within D’Youville regarding PTSD and I have mentioned to them how much Paws & Patriots has done and continues to do for me. I tell everyone that I can go in there on my worse day and just 5 minutes of working with the dogs changes my mood."

The SPCA Paws & Patriots program assists veterans in their coping skills and readjustment from their experiences in uniform to civilian life. The program reports that as bonds are established with shelter animals, veterans' actions and overall perspectives improve.

More Information

To learn more about the SPCA Paws & Patriots program, visit https://www.yourspca.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=574 or contact Jeff Rouch at the SPCA: jeffreyr@spcaec.com or jtrouch@yahoo.com.

To learn more about D'Youville's programs for student veterans, visit: http://www.dyc.edu/admissions/veterans/

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