He’s a good boy and now he could have a future helping someone who served the country.

Caesar, the Burke County Animal Services Pet of the Month who was up for adoption, has passed initial testing and will be on his way to Florida soon for training in the K9 for Warriors program, said Kaitlin Settlemyre, director of Burke County Animal Services.

K9 for Warriors is a nonprofit service dog organization that provides service dogs to military members suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury and/or military sexual trauma, according to its website.

Settlemyre said animal services has partnered with the K9 for Warriors program and thought Caesar would be a good candidate for the program.

“This is the first dog from Burke County that’s been given this opportunity,” Settlemyre said.

She said animal services staff thought Caesar would be a good candidate for the program because of his temperament and size. Settlemyre said he gets along with other dogs, is affectionate toward people, has good manners and is a quiet dog. She said he doesn’t care if someone is messing with his face or feet and doesn’t give any warning signs that he’s going to be aggressive.

Settlemyre said Caesar will travel to Florida to start training in the next several weeks and training will take close to four months.

However, Settlemyre warned, he could flunk out of training at any point. It’s not a sure deal for him, she said.

If Caesar doesn’t make it through the program, he will come back to Burke County Animal Services and be up for adoption again.

“He will make somebody a great pet,” she said.

But if he does make it, the K9 for Warriors program does a photo shoot with the dogs and their graduation is broadcast. Settlemyre said the program will allow the county to broadcast Caesar’s graduation, if he makes it, on its Facebook page. County animal services staff also will be invited to Florida for his graduation as well, she said.

“They make a big deal of it,” Settlemyre said. “It’s a really cool thing.”

Meanwhile, work on improving the Burke County Animal Services Center continues. Settlemyre said on Oct. 1 and 2, the center will limit public access in the building as improvements are being made.

“The public is more than welcome to still come and visit, the staff would just escort them around the building to view the animals,” she said.

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Sharon McBrayer can be reached at smcbrayer@morganton.com or at 828-432-8946.

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