USSDR Blog Banner

A Veterans Story of Her Service Dog

A Veterans Story of Her Service Dog

admin 2 December 7, 2016
blog title

Veteran and Her Service Dog 

Spirit is Wendy Clouser’s partner, as well as her pet. As a service dog, he helps the vet deal with PTSD and the effects of injuries. She relies on a wheelchair much of the time.

Clouser is a long-time dog lover, but she didn’t see a place in her life for a service dog. That all changed five years ago when she met two people who explained how much they relied on their dogs. Once she saw how the dogs made life easier, she decided to give it a try.

She teamed up with a nonprofit that trains dogs for wounded vets.

Argus Made the Difference 

Argus Service Dog Foundation made the process simple for Wendy, without long waits or large fees. The team at Argus trains service dogs to handle complicated tasks for their owners, from retrieving household objects to opening doors and safely navigating public areas.

Argus founders Brandon McMillan, Eric Brotman and Mike Herstik are on a mission to make the lives of disabled vets easier. The foundation provides a full spectrum of help, from matching the service dog to each vet, training both and providing follow-up.

“Give Lives Back” 

Argus and Spirit have changed things for the better for Clouser. She says simply, “They give lives back to people.”

She now feels comfortable in social situations. Before she went through the motions, but didn’t feel connected or genuinely happy with others. With the aptly named Spirit in her life, she feels comfortable going out and meeting people.

This short video shows Clouser and Spirit together. ‘’

Service Dogs: a Critical Contribution 

According to Stars and Stripes,the Veteran’s Administration is conducting a major, $10 million study to quantify the emotional help that support dogs offer vets.

But veterans who currently rely on the dogs have already decided. Said one, “My dog did more for me than any psychologist could in a lifetime.”

Clouser points out that she is more social and more willing to try new things because of Spirit. With the dog’s help, she is now kayaking, downhill skiing and rock climbing.

Service dogs keep vets independent, physically active and engaged in everyday life.

The Argus Approach

Argus started several years ago when Herstik and McMillan decided to help a vet who lost both legs in Afghanistan. At Walter Reed for the final phase of the training, they encountered several other vets who wanted a service dog too. That was the inspiration for Argus.

There are many organizations that train service dogs for vets and the disabled. But they often have long waiting lists, so getting a dog can take months and even years. Most charge for their services, making it financially impossible for a large number of vets.

Argus has a different approach. It is set up to match vets and dogs quickly. The foundation uses volunteers for the training and never charges for its work.

The founders are well matched for the job they do. Mike Herstik is a canine trainer and instructor with an international reputation. He has worked with Navy SEALS and IDF K9. Brandon McMillan has served as an animal trainer for movies and television. He stars in Lucky Dog on CBS, and has a long history of rescuing dogs from death row and training them as service dogs. Eric Brotman is a psychologist. His program Life Skills helps the developmentally disabled with behavior difficulties.

2 Replies to “A Veterans Story of Her Service Dog”

  1. Hello, I am a war veteran with PTSD and other medical condition. I have a German Shepherd that needs to be register as a Service companion but the VA does do that anymore. Where or if possible, can you guide me on how to register my German Sheppard as a service dog. She is going through German Sheppard training and is the only thing that keeps me calm.

  2. Hi I was wondering if someone could help me and my son or help us find someone who can help us ..
    My son is a sergent in the Marines active duty station in VA .he’s going thru a divorce and has to move back to the barrecks and I’m sure you know dogs aren’t allowed ..he has hand gunny. Since he was born. He is now 2 he trained very well has some separation anxiety we have no where for him to go he is a Shep/husky mix excellent with babies ,kids other dogs he’s a great dog and I really don’t want him going to a shelter he will never survive there my son has till Saturday to get out if his apartment so in begging to find some help for him
    My phone number is
    570+982-2949
    My son is SGT Anthony Ayr
    540-229-5992

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Preloader
X
SERVICE DOG ID CARD USA Service Animal Registration Your Service Dog ID card will include our convenient QR Code for a quick scan link to our registry lookup. By simply entering your dog\'s registration number your official registered profile will be accessible for quick verification in the event the validity of your service dog is ever questioned. 2054
$29.99
Product Image
5 11490
THE BEST! - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
THANK YOU! NOW MY DOG CAN ALWAYS BE WITH ME WHERE EVER I GO
Do I get it in the mail? - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
I'm waiting for it in the mail
Satisfied - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
I’m a satisfied customer
exelente - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
exelente me encanto todo muy buena calidad
Support Registration - by , March 25, 2011
4/ 4stars
It was good, it's just the digital part you pay $ 92.00 and then have to pay to get it printed out. But Thanks for everything.
Excellent - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Easy to apply. Delivered quickly
Return customer - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
USA service dog makes this so easy! The mental health professional got back to me the next day and I had my letter within 2 days !
Great Experience! - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
The process was very simple and everyone was super helpful. I would definitely recommend them!
Excellent experience - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Easy ordering process, very quick shipping, timely delivery and the product exceeded my expectations for quality and workmanship. Would definitely recommend this to friends and family.
Shipping cost? - by , March 25, 2011
4/ 4stars
The service was fast and the items are exactly as described. I am currently in Mexico and was very pleased that the items were shipped here, however 100 dollars US to ship 1 lb seems excessive. That being said I am thankful to have these much needed items.
- by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
My therapist registered my dog, so I'm not sure how easy it was to do. However, I really love how quickly I received my tag and card. Now I can't be told that "they don't allow pets" at places anymore.
AMAZING! - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Everyone was incredibly responsive and helpful. I am so thankful for this service!
Light vest and cards - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Fast delivery. Quality products
ID card - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
It looks great, haven't used it yet but will be in the near future
Perfect - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
I can't believe they came up with the perfect picture from the photo I sent in. Everything was awsome.
Great products - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Amazing experience. Simple, professional and quality. Thank you!
Fantastic customer service - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Fantastic customer service Maddie went above and beyond I made a mistake when purchasing a vest size for Callie I ordered an extra small she saw a picture of Callie and realized the mistake and contacted me and corrected the issuie thank you so much for the fantastic customer service Maddie!!!
Excellent quality, easy use of website and great customer service, - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Perfect. exactly what I needed.
Benji - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Great except the certificate did not come ? Only the vest and laminate card ?
Document looks unprofessional - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
The process was fast and smooth, however the letter that was sent to me looked like I created it myself, not professional looking. No official letterhead, font etc.