Amid pit bull debate, service dogs prove life-changing for Sioux City veterans

“The biggest problem is you have people that do not have a trained dog. They’re taking untrained dogs out there and they’re causing problems,” Brodie said. “They’re saying they’re service dogs, but they’re not.”

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His first job was training service dogs in prison.

It takes more than $50,000 to breed, raise, train, match and support a service dog trained through America’s VetDogs. After the puppies graduate from the prison training, they receive an additional three months of formal training, O’Brien said. The group then flies the veterans in and houses them for two weeks while they work with their new puppies. Veterans are never charged for the service; the organization relies largely on donations.

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VA PTSD Service dogs

Do Service Dogs Help Treat PTSD? V.A. Still Doesn’t Know

While the V.A. covers the veterinary care and the equipment costs of service dogs for veterans with certain physical disabilities, like blindness or vision impairment, department leaders have long contended that there isn’t enough clinical evidence to prove their benefits for treating mental-health issues.

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‘PTSD does not count as a disability’: Idaho veteran says hotel ousted him over service dog

For someone who says he prefers cats over dogs, Nic Day spends a lot of time with canines.

Atlas, a 1-year-old Akita, is nearly always by Day’s side. A Marine Corps veteran, Day started experiencing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder after multiple tours in Iraq.

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Service dogs actually help veterans with PTSD, new study says

Up until this point there has been limited research on the how and why service dogs are believed to help PTSD symptoms.

“It’s not a cure. I think some people come into this thinking that the dog is magic and that PTSD will be gone once they have the dog but our data shows that it’s certainly not a cure but that it will substantially reduce symptoms for individuals,” said Assistant Professor of Human-Animal Interaction Maggie O’Haire.

The study was led by O’Haire. She said prior to the study there was a lot of anecdotal info and great stories but no science behind it.

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