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Therapy Dogs Would Help Veterans With PTSD Under New Bill

Photo credit: Dog Bless You

Service dog and his veteran.

Veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder could help train therapy dogs for other veterans under a pilot program being considered by Congress.

The Veterans Dog Training Therapy Act, introduced by Ohio Rep. Steve Stivers, would put in place a pilot program at several VA medical facilities. These VA facilities would then connect veterans suffering from PTSD with organizations that train therapy dogs for physically disabled vets.

Stivers said in a statement that the dog-training organizations would give veterans with PTSD "an outlet to constructively help themselves" while they help their comrades:

“As a nation, we share a moral obligation to care for our veterans when they return home and to provide them with meaningful therapies to help them deal with any service-related issues they may have—whether physical or mental.

I have personally met veterans whose lives have been dramatically improved through working with a service dog. It can make a real difference in the life of a wounded warrior.”

The legislation doesn't establish which VA medical centers would become part of the pilot program.

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