The Washington Commanders, like many NFL teams, are about to break for the summer.
But like the other 31 NFL organizations, the Commanders are still making tweaks to their organization.
The team announced the newest member of their organization on Tuesday, with head coach Ron Rivera delivering the news in the cutest way possible:
Washington introduced Goldie, a four-month-old English yellow labrador from North Carolina, as their newest team pup. Goldie is part of the team through the organization K9s for Warriors, which helps place service dogs with veterans:
New roster addition ✍️ Meet GOLDIE, the new @Commanders Team Dog!
Mando left some big paws to fill last season, but she’s up for the challenge!
— K9s For Warriors (@k9sforwarriors) June 13, 2023
Goldie certainly has big paws to fill, as noted above. Last year’s team dog, Mando, left the organization after being paired with a veteran.
Introducing our team dog for this season,
Named by our players, Mando is in training with @k9sforwarriors to soon become a service dog for a military veteran in need!
— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) September 6, 2022
In a press release announcing the addition of Goldie, Rivera highlighted some of the traits that made her a perfect fit. “After a thorough vetting process, our coaching staff was impressed with Goldie’s tenacity and speed on the grass. She leaves it all on the field, whether she’s fetching a tennis ball or treat. Goldie will bring paw-sitive energy and deep fetch expertise to our lineup and I am excited to welcome her to the team,” said Rivera.
Goldie will spend the 2023 season with the team, before being paired with a veteran.
K9s for Warriors was founded back in 2011 by Shari Duval, whose son Brett, a civilian K9 police bomb dog handler who served in Iraq, came home with PTSD following his time overseas. Shari found that her son was most like himself when paired with a service dog, so she created the program to help her son and other veterans like him.