Where to Find Service Dogs For Veterans
Organizations That Provide Service Dogs to Veterans and Military
Service members and veterans can come home from war needing to heal. There are many different ways to do this. One way to help with this is to offer these service members and veterans a service dog. This is a trained dog that works with those with a disability, such as a visual impairment, hearing impairment, mental illness, PTSD, seizures, mobility impairment, or more.
In honor of K9 Veterans Day, here is a list of organizations that help service members and veterans receive a service dog, and in some cases an emotional or healing dog.
This organization rescues and trains shelter dogs to be paired as service dogs for warriors with service-connected post-traumatic stress, traumatic brain injuries, and/or military sexual trauma. They are the nation’s largest provider of service dogs for disabled American veterans.
At NEADS, they offer fully-trained service dogs for US veterans from any conflict who have a permanent physical disability, hearing loss, MS, or other progressive conditions. The disabilities don’t need to be service-related. Veterans applying to the PTSD program should live within a three-hour drive of the NEADS campus in Princeton, MA. There will be no charge to veterans.
At America’s VetDogs, they provide enhanced mobility and returned independence to veterans, active duty service members, and first responders with disabilities. They specialize in placing highly-skilled service and guide dogs to individuals with physical injuries, PTSD, hearing and vision loss, and seizures. All services will be paid for, including transportation to and from their campus in Smithtown, NY.
Patriot PAWS trains and provides service dogs of the highest quality at no cost to disabled American veterans and others with mobile disabilities and PTSD in order to help restore their physical and emotional independence. They also work to build partnerships with local, state, and national organizations to help develop and support this goal.
The vision at this organization is to end animal homelessness in the US while giving military veterans and their families the extraordinary love of a companion pet. They make this happen through their nationwide shelter and veterinary networks, military and veteran organizations, and a public that values the lives of both the vulnerable and heroic among us.
With Companions for Heroes, they provide companion dogs on a case-by-case basis. Their service dogs are obtained from shelters, recuses, and humane societies that otherwise might be put down. This service is free of charge for active duty military, veterans, first responders, military spouses, children, and gold star families. The organization also increases public awareness of PTSD, TBI, and other challenges confronting members of the military. They rally support for animal welfare and the adoption of shelter and/or recuse animals.
The animal rescue program at American Humane was born on the battlefields of World War I Europe where volunteers with American Humane deployed to recuse and care for 68,000 wounded war horses each month. They now provide lifesaving service dogs to veterans suffering from PTSD, and work to protect America’s hard-working military dogs by recognizing their heroic contributions to our country. Their Pups4Patriots program gives veterans with PTSD and TBI the support they need, while also giving shelter dogs across the US a second chance at life. They do not provide guide dogs, hearing dogs, or mobility dogs.
With Working Dogs for Vets, they have a No Veteran Left Behind Program. This program allows disabled heroes, who are able to, to train their own service dogs. They will be matched with a dog from a local shelter or if they own a dog, after an evaluation, they might be able to train their own dog. They will work with a local volunteer. Volunteers are either a local member of law enforcement, military, or K9 handlers throughout the US. After the hero and service dog complete training, they must help another team. Their goal is to have trainers at every military base and major city within 3-5 years. There is no charge for this service.
At This Able Veteran, they combine specialty-trained PTSD service dogs with a Trauma Resiliency Program and life-skills training meant to complement the veteran’s ongoing therapy.
At Hero Dogs they place service dogs with veterans and first responders in the greater Washington DC area. They also place skilled companion dogs with veterans and first-responder families and facility dogs with qualified clinicians.
This organization works to connect the nation’s military veterans with rescued animals. They have made over 300 successful matches. Pets are matched to the needs, wants, and hopes of each of our nation’s veterans. Pets for Vets attempts to find the animal that will bring the most support and comfort to each person. Beyond dogs, they have also placed cats and rabbits. Any veteran who can benefit from these animals should apply.
With this organization, they transform dogs into custom-trained, life-changing assistance dogs for people in need. Their clients live with disabilities like autism, TBI, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, Down Syndrome, CP, spinal cord injuries and more. They serve veterans with post-traumatic stress (PTS) but do not provide service dogs for non-military civilians diagnosed with PTS. They have graduated hundreds of client-dog teams.
At Operation Delta Dog they rescue homeless dogs from shelters and breed-resue groups. They then train them to work as service dogs with local veterans who are suffering from PTSD and TBI. The dogs get homes and veterans get that extra help.
As you can see there are many organizations out there that want to help veterans and service members through providing no-cost service or other support animals.
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- K9 Veterans Day: About Military Working Dogs
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- Suicide Prevention Resources For Military & Veterans
- Man’s Best Friend Versus PTSD
About the author
Julie Provost is a freelance writer, blogger, and owner of Soldier's Wife, Crazy Life, a support blog for military spouses. She lives in Tennessee with her National Guard husband and three boys.