There is a difference between Therapy Dogs and Service Dogs depending on your need.
There is a great place to identify the difference between these dogs and it is www.usdogregistry.org. There, you will find out which dog may best meet the needs that you have.
Who it may help:
Service Dogs: help with performing a function for a person that is limited by a disability.
Emotional Support Dogs: help with emotional problems by providing comfort and support.
Therapy Dogs: provide affection and comfort to individuals in hospitals, nursing homes and other facilities.
- Where to find Therapy/Service/Emotional Support Dogs for Vets:
This can often be a confusing process. One excellent source of information is for service dogs is http://www.assistancedogsinternational.org
- An excellent organization that gives very personal attention to the needs and follow through is Shepherds For Lost Sheep http://www.shepherdsforlostsheepinc.org/ While they focus primarily on the Psychiatric Service Dogs, they rarely find a veteran without a physical need as well. Therefore, they train their dogs to the individual veterans needs whether it is PTSD mitigation, traumatic brain injury (TBI) mitigation, or a mobility problem.
- Another resource for service dogs for veterans and first responder is America’s Vet Dogs https://www.vetdogs.org/?gclid=Cj0KCQjwhJrqBRDZARIsALhp1WS-k1KE3Rywc1glfWTJynmp13qZMp7xpnySuScF8B7Ew8U-jXUrS4YaAvtoEALw_wcB
- Train a dog Save a Warrior https://tadsaw.org/The Train a Dog Save a Warrior (TADSAW) program serves the veteran, the family and the community, by providing the warrior with a K-9 rescue ‘Battle Buddy’ and the training and tools needed to become an accredited TADSAW Warrior/Service Dog Team.
TADSAW additionally provides for the training of a Medical Alert Service Dog for any veteran’s immediate family, the spouse or children, surviving with compassion fatigue, secondary PTSD, or any other mental health issue diagnosed while the veteran was deployed or on active duty.
You will need to follow complete instructions to apply for the type of dog service most appropriate. There is a commitment to the dog and organization, so be sure to read the applications carefully.
There are many organizations that offer emotional support and therapy dogs. Please check LOCAL resources to determine what is available.
We will post additional, specific information soon to help you navigate this option.
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