USSDR Blog Banner

Science Confirms Value of Service Dogs for PTSD

Science Confirms Value of Service Dogs for PTSD

admin 1 March 20, 2018
blog title

Do service dogs really make a difference for vets with post-traumatic stress syndrome? According to a study at Purdue University, the answer is a resounding YES.

The study, reported in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, looked at a number of factors related to emotional health. Those vets with service dogs showed higher scores in:

  • Satisfaction with their life
  • Mental health
  • Ability to socialize
  • Resilience

In the case of life satisfaction, vets with a service dog had a 22 percent higher rate than those without a dog.

The published study is the largest scientific evaluation of how effective service dogs for those suffering from PTSD. Working with K9s for Warriors, researchers checked with 141 vets in two categories, those who already had a dog, and those who had requested but not yet been paired with a dog. All the of the vets in the study had access to standard care for PTSD throughout the review.

The study did not show a difference between the physical health of participants with dogs and without. But vets with dogs said they missed work fewer times and dealt with on-the-job health problems less often.

The study looked at psychiatric service dogs, not emotional support animals or therapy animals. These dogs have gone through rigorous training that teaches them how to reduce PTSD symptoms, including anxiety, hypervigilance, nightmares and feelings of isolation.

“A Change for the Positive”

The outcome of the study isn’t news for vets with service dogs. Take Stacy Pearsall, an Air Force combat photographer who worked in a war zone. She is a survivor, having endured two roadside bombs, and now deals with PTSD, traumatic brain injury, hearing loss and cervical spine trauma.

“The people I work with consistently have noticed a change in my demeanor,” she says, since she got her service dog, Charlie. He soothes her when she has a nightmare and lets her know when someone is behind her. As her stress has gone done, she has experienced fewer seizures. Instead of one or two each week, she has had just one a month since Charlie came into her life.

“OK to Go Out into the World”

Another member of the study is Randy Dexter, who described himself as a “suicidal mess” before his service dog Captain came into his life. Dexter says with the dog at his side, he is far less isolated and depressed.

After teaming up with Captain, Dexter went on to become a campus director and is going to college classes. The dog checks out the environment and people when they are outside. Dexter says he watches Captain’s body language instead of scanning rooftops and faces.

Dexter had little luck with prescription medicine for PTSD, which made little difference in how he dealt with the world. But then he met Captain. “Not only did he save my life, he’s made it better . . . than I ever thought it could be.”

Resources and Gear for Your Service Animal

The team at USA Service Animal Registration is committed to helping these working dogs and their owners feel safe, comfortable and supported. That’s why the website offers a simple 3-step registration process. And it’s free!

The site has a wide range of information and resources for owners, including:

Looking for gear for your service dog? USA Service Animal Registration has an online store with a variety of gear, like patches, vests, leashes, and ID.

Check out USA Service Animal Registration today to register your service dog, get answers to your questions, and to find the gear you need.

One Reply to “Science Confirms Value of Service Dogs for PTSD”

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 12230
Awesome - very helpful & arrived quickly - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Awesome - very helpful & arrived quickly
- by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Service Excellence - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Outstanding website, easy to move from screen to screen. Provided me with the opportunity to see exactly what Liam needs as a service dog.
Did not receive my letter - by , March 25, 2011
1/ 1stars
Did not receive it what do ever. Don’t know if it include letter for both housing and traveling. Waiting for a long time for consultation.
Emotional Support Registration - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Quick and easy. Will definitely let those folks who need to, contact your service! Thank you for the no stress experience. This means so much to me.
- by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
It was, great, it always been
Love this site - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Great, easy to learn the specifics, and to purchase.
- by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
I’m so happy I was able to find a program that met everything I was looking for!!
Psychiatric Service Dog Travel Letter - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
The overall experience was remarkably easy I simply followed the steps presented, it went from step to step, and my computer skills are challenged, and yet I finished within minutes.
Psychiatric Service Dog Travel Letter - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
The overall experience was remarkably easy I simply followed the steps presented, it went from step to step, and my computer skills are challenged, and yet I finished within minutes.
Awesome - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
The best...its first time when I make this...
Thank You - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
I have put off doing this because I thought it would be time consuming. I was wrong. It was easy and timely.
Registration - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Very user friendly site
Thanks - by , March 25, 2011
4/ 4stars
I was needed to do it 3 times. It didn’t work in the beginning, everything else was fine and OK. Thank you.
No letter - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Haven't received my letter
Awesome - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Your product will have added an excellent lifetime change for me by allowing me to bring my dog with me everywhere. Thank you
Excellent Service - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Very user friendly and prompt service. Highly recommend
Too small - by , March 25, 2011
3/ 3stars
My dog's weight falls in the range for M vest but it was ended up to be too small
Service dog registration - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
Great service and website, perfect for the dog I have been training for my stroke. Highly recommend them and there products thanks for your help.
Satisfied - by , March 25, 2011
5/ 5stars
I am very happy with my experience I am not capable of doing internet due to my medical condition, the girl who helped me was very caring and willing to help. I would highly recommend them because they are here to help the disabled. Thank you