Service Dogs are Saving Veterans
Veterans are returning home from combat with a new battle to fight, one against an unseen enemy. Tensionsruns high, anxiety lurks around every corner, and stresses of civilian life can seem insurmountable. In 2016, the Department of Veterans Affairs reported that 6 million veterans suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A service dog can provide the stability and assistance many of these veterans need to live a normal life again.
How Service Dogs Help Veterans with PTSD
Service dogs provide companionship, which can be beneficial for veterans struggling with depression or anxiety. They require daily walks, which encourages veterans to get outside and interact with their community. They also attend weekly training sessions with their veteran handlers, giving them a sense of purpose and helping them feel connected to others. handlers must complete tasks to care for their dog, such as feeding and grooming, which can help bring a sense of structure and routine to their day.
Service dogs can help veterans re-establish trust after trauma by providing unconditional love and support. They can help ease symptoms of PTSD, such as flashbacks and nightmares, by providing physical calming cues, such as deep pressure therapy. They can also serve as an early warning system for veteran’s experiencing anxiety or panic attacks by alerting them to changes in their environment or body language.
The Impact of Service Dogs on Veterans' Lives
Service dogs have a profound impact on the lives of veterans suffering from PTSD. In one study, 68% of participants reported experiencing a decrease in symptoms of PTSD after working with a service dog. In another study, 74% of participants reported feeling less lonely after receiving a service dog. And in a third study, 100% of participants said they would recommend getting a service dog to other veterans suffering from PTSD.
These numbers are impressive, but they don’t tell the whole story. The personal stories of veterans who have been helped by service dogs are truly inspirational. One veteran credits his service dog with saving his life after he attempted suicide. Another says her service dog has given her back her confidence and allowed her to re-engage with the world around her. These are just two examples of the thousands of ways service dogs are making a difference in the lives of veterans every day.
You Are Not Alone
if you’re a veteran struggling with PTSD, know that you’re not alone. There is hope; service dogs are making a difference in the lives of veterans suffering from this invisible injury every day. These loyal companions provide unconditional love and support when it’s needed most and give vets the motivation they need to continue fighting for their lives. If you’re considering getting a service dog, reach out to an organization like Rescue 22 Foundation today; they’ll help you every step of the way to finding the perfect furry friend for your needs.