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War dog being laid to rest to receive military funeral honors

Max with his guardian Pam Pelton after retiring from the military.
Pam Pelton / MSPCA

Max, a German shepherd who served his country from 2003 to 2007, will be laid to rest at the MSPCA's Hillside Acre Cemetery in Metheun, Mass. on June 14, 2014, according to an MSPCA press release.

The war dog is set to receive military honors for serving the U.S. military for four years. Max passed away in 2012 at the age of 10 on, of all days, Memorial Day. He will be honored with taps, law enforcement and town officials at his funeral.

Max was adopted by Pam Pelton of Northfield, NH, from the Military War Dog Agency at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, TX. For five years Max was Pelton's companion and buddy.

“It’s obviously a very bitter sweet time,” said Pelton. “It’s very hard to say goodbye but I take great comfort in the outpouring of love and respect he’s received.”

Max was trained as a “sniffing dog”, most likely stationed in Iraq or Afghanistan. The exact nature of his work is unknown but it might have been detecting explosive material to help warn servicemen and women, or even civilians. Whatever he did, Max was loyal and protective until the end.

“Max literally saved my life years ago when we were walking in the woods and encountered two feral dogs. The dogs jumped toward me and Max immediately sprang into action—fighting them off and very likely saving both our lives,” said Pelton.

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