Tag Archives: post traumatic stress disorder

Gabe, Best Man

When veteran Justin Lansford got married last month to long-time girlfriend, Carol, his best man was his support dog Gabe.

A Golden Retriever, Gabe was matched with Lansford when he returned from Afghanistan an amputee thanks to an IED explosion in 2012.

Lansford lost his left leg to that explosion and also suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder.

Justin and Gabe wait at the alter (Brad Hall Photography)

Justin and Gabe wait at the alter (Brad Hall Photography)

ABC News’ Good Morning America also covered the story:

A big shout-out to Justin, Carol and Gabe….may you have a long and happy life together!

Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, Canine Catering Ltd, Christchurch, New Zealand

The prescription for a soldier’s PTSD

I just found this very short item on the San Francisco Chronicle website.  A photo of a heavily tattooed man, his baby and his dog….

 Photo: Patty Snijders

Photo: Patty Snijders

The man is Ari Sonnenberg with his daughter, Nila Louise Sonnenberg, born April 1, 2015, and his Belgian Malinois dog, Sigmund Freud (also known as  Siggy).

Patty Snijders (Ari’s wife) says: “The dog has helped both Ari and me tremendously. He’s made our marriage stronger and prepared us for parenthood in many ways.”

A simple photograph and a lovely sentiment.  Siggy sounds very special and his presence has clearly been a help to the couple.

The body of knowledge about the value of dogs for our physical and mental health continues to grow, with research and study and stories like those of Siggy and his owners.

Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, Canine Catering Ltd, Christchurch, New Zealand

Now Paw-tucket can live up to its name

The city of Pawtucket, Rhode Island had a 10-year old ordinance banning the ownership of pit bulls until earlier this week.  A judge ruled that a 2013 state law banning breed-specific legislation meant that the city’s law was now illegal.

This is a win for the fight against breed specific laws and restrictions.

Pit bull owners in Pawtucket celebrated on Sunday with a parade.  There was also a free dog training class offered afterwards.  A local group, Pit Bulls for PTSD, also participated in the parade.  The group trains pit bulls to become service dogs for autistic children and veterans suffering from PTSD.

Please remember:  punish the deed and not the breed!

Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, Canine Catering Ltd, Christchurch, New Zealand

Pets for Patriots

Pets for Patriots is a charitable organisation working to place adult dogs and cats from shelters with veterans from the U.S. military.  It is now well-documented that many U.S. veterans  return from overseas only to suffer the ongoing effects of post-traumatic stress disorder.  Animals help these personnel connect to civilian life and offer them the unique bond of non-judgmental support and love.

There are many dogs and cats up for adoption in U.S. shelters – and any shelter, rescue organisation or SPCA can join the programme.  The most important motivation is the commitment to find homes for hard-to-adopt animals.

Here’s a video of one Pets for Patriots success story, the first Pets for Patriots adoption in the State of Hawaii.

Paws and Stripes helping US veterans

A man who is good enough to shed his blood for his country is good enough to be given a square deal afterwards.”
– Theodore Roosevelt

Paws and Stripes is a not-for-profit organisation working to place service dogs with US war veterans who are suffering from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injury.   Through their efforts dogs from shelters are trained to have a new life as a service dog – all at no cost to the veteran.

The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan has been going on for many years now, and with this the escalating numbers of returning veterans who are suffering from PTSD. Traumatic brain injury is often suffered because soldiers are injured by  ‘improvised explosive devices.’  Sadly, insurance companies will not pay to see these men and women given the use of a service dog.

Jim Stanek is the co-founder of Paws and Stripes (along with his wife).  He received injuries during his third tour of duty in Iraq and, during his nine months of treatment, he found solace in the presence of service dogs. In May of 2010, Jim and his wife unsuccessfully tried to find a trainer for their rescue dog named Sarge.  They founded Paws and Stripes in June 2010 to fill the need for these types of service dogs.

Veterans are able to choose their own dog from a shelter before entering the training programme and part of their rehabilitation is their involvement in the training.

This seems like a very special organisation combining the involvement of service dogs with shelter rescue – all whilst helping a group of people in need.   Visit the Paws and Stripes website to learn more about the programme and how to help.  While there, read stories like that of Master Sargeant Justin Jordan and his dog, Dallas (pictured below – photos copyright Paws and Stripes).

This slideshow requires JavaScript.