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Vet Making A Difference Training Service Dogs at No Cost

Vet Making A Difference Training Service Dogs at No Cost

Anup 7 July 6, 2021
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A local Witchata man is making a difference for veterans, by training service dogs at no cost for them. The only money any veteran would have to pay is the application fee.

Toney Turner is a veteran himself, but says he wasn’t a combat veteran and stayed in the United States.

“So basically I worked as a paralegal, my issues I have had health-wise were not military-related,” said Toney Turner who owns Kevlar K-9.

Turner has his own service dog and demonstrated how she is trained to help him with his health issues that could result in something that looks like a seizure or accident. However, he says he really saw the need of service dog training for veterans, especially in the Midwest.

“A lot of people have to go to Virginia or the East Coast and there is a two- or three-year waiting list. These dogs are doing things that no pill could ever do. In fact, most of the veterans in our program usually have their medication cut in half if not closer to three quarters,” said Turner.

Turner’s organization, Kevlar K-9, became an official non-profit in April of 2019 and has matched about 10 veterans with a service dog. One of those veterans being Leslie Rooney who served in the Air Force for four years.

“I saw things that nobody should ever have to see, it really affected me,” Leslie Rooney.

Leslie’s dog is trained to help with her health issues as well as her PTSD.

“My legs start shaking, so she is taught to come in and put her feet on me to make me realize she is there, and everything is okay. If we could get more dogs with more veterans, I think the 22 suicides a day of veterans would decrease. She has been a lifeline to me, I don’t know where I would be right now if I didn’t have her,” said Rooney.

Another veteran who was deployed in Iraq says she met Turner at a group meeting at the VA and getting help from him and getting her service dog changed her life.

“Pairing up with him was a miracle that hope again to be able to go out in public and do things I used to do. It’s that hope,” said Ashley Aimes.

Aimes says she’s had her dog for about 15 months, and he also is trained to help her with her PTSD.

“He helps with day-to-day life. I go to work, I work at City Hall, I love it, everything with him has made life better, not perfect, but better,” said Aimes.

Turner added they try to adopt as many dogs as they can, but some breeders have also donated puppies to help with the cause. Turner says training service dogs for no cost is the least he can do for men and women who have served our country.

If you want to donate to Kevlar K-9 you can click HERE. If you are a veteran who wants to be paired with a dog, you can visit Turner’s website to contact him.

7 Replies to “Vet Making A Difference Training Service Dogs at No Cost”

  1. I am a retired Air Force wife and a current Air Force mother. I am also a retired Registered Nurse and First Responder due to permanent disability. As such, I am living in poverty on Social Security Disability.
    I am extremely hard of hearing and, since I have had more than 20 small strokes in the past 12 years, I have fallen in my home countless times.
    I have 2 dogs, of whom I have trained to help me up when I fall and to alert me when someone is at the door or nearby me. However, I would love to have a professional trainer to help me with the things I do not know how to do for more advanced training for them. I had them enrolled in a training program, but it was discontinued due to Covid approximately 18 months ago. Since I am disabled and have an extremely limited income, I am hoping that you can help me with training my dogs further or referring me to someone who can help me that I would be able to afford.
    Thank you so very much for your service!

  2. I’m so happy to find you, we have a daughter who is from a veteran family with PTSD and bipolar, on both sides of the family. Not sure exactly what she has inherited, but she has problems socially making friends and keeping them, she has anxiety and issues in school though she is straight-A student. She feels fear and exhibits some control issues.. We were recently given this amazing dog that seems to have been somebody’s assist dog, and we would like to get him evaluated to know that we’re not missing something awesome that he’s able to provide. I think God has found a match for her but we would like to find out rules and regulations and particularly how I can give the right commands/words so he will help her. I’ve been researching all day, and reading and came across your information. I don’t know if you would care to write back or if you would have some time to speak to me. We so love dogs and people could use your help. Thank you so much for your time, God bless you. I am Mom and wife to someone with PTSD also.
    Maren

  3. I think what ur doing is great can you help me get 1 I’m not a vet but I am disabled I have COPD, arthritis, osteoarthritis and neuropathy I am on a limited income. I can pay some but not a lot I live alone and hardly ever sees anyone very only and need a dog so when I don’t realize I’m wheezing or having difficulty breathing my boy can let me know plz help.
    Thank you Joyce wright

  4. what do i need from my phiciatric doctor in order to have a service animal. And how old must the animal must be to become a service animal.

  5. What a great service you provide for our veteran’s. How would somebody, on the east coast, with an interest in this type of service for others, find the proper places/ contacts to research about it ??? God Bless You, Sue

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