THE FIRST RESPONSE IN THE LAST LINE OF DEFENSE
More Dogs Trained is More Lives Save - Provide those who serve with hope of a strong future through trained dogs placed as companion, Emotional Support or Service Dogs.
Provide tools to assist for mental health and stability. We want our clients to have a feeling of security and empower them to live their best life. We place rescue dogs, donated dogs and those from our breed for purpose program with a worthy veteran, first responder or gold star family.
Paws and Warriors was established December 2016. Operating in the Unites States and Canada, is a team united by the love for dogs and passion to support those that serve and protect us; eligible veterans, first responders, and gold star families of both nations. Each of us have been affected deeply by PTSD in one way or another. Many of our clients volunteer with Paws and Warriors to pay it forward understanding personally how much hope and healing comes with a furry companion.
To achieve the mission we need the financial stability to allow us to provide a regular stream of dogs quickly and ethically for applicants. Funding limits the number of clients we can serve. Many of our clients see us as we their last and only hope. Our average cost for training fees and expenses (food and veterinarian care) is $5,000 - $7,000 per dog. The average cost of most service dog programs is $25,000 - 30,000 and average waiting period is 2-3 years.
The US Environmental Protection Agency estimate the current statistic value of one life to be $7.4 million. For a micro fraction of that value, Paws and Warriors can provide a dog before a Veteran, First Responder or Gold Star family member quits fighting. When we train a rescue or donated dog to be a service dog we are also providing the dog with a job, a purpose. We are producing ambassadors that can educate the public and community how important it is to respect the role of a working service dog and invisible wounds can be healed too.
Therapy Benefits Veterans:
There are many ways that simply being around a therapy animal can help a veteran.
Taking care of a dog creates opportunities for the Veteran to be more sociable with others in a very natural and civil manner. The Veteran’s dog becomes the focal point of the initial encounter, which can serve as a great conversation starter and help the Veteran to relax.
Additionally, Veterans often become more willing to share their thoughts and feelings, reducing stress. Along these lines, pet therapy facilitates recovery, encouraging Veterans to reintegrate with their families, friends, and society. This socialization is equally important for the well-being of the dog.
Reduce depression and suicidal thoughts.
People are known to talk to their pets, constantly taking pictures of them and just hanging out with them. Feelings of depression will be reduced because of not feeling alone and having someone with whom to interact. This can also lower or disrupt suicidal thinking, and may even prevent a suicide from occurring. Simply put, being around a pet therapy animal will naturally make a person smile and feel happier.
Beyond acting as a therapist themselves, animals can also facilitate therapy as described above under socialization.
Physical and mental health benefits.
Studies show that animal-assisted therapy helps people recover from and better cope with health problems, such as heart disease, cancer, and mental health disorders. Part of this is likely due to the simple fact that taking care of an animal promotes more physical activities, such as walking, swimming, biking, and boating. When we exercise, our bodies release endorphins that come with health benefits.
Additionally, interacting with animals can increase a person’s level of the hormone oxytocin. Oxytocin helps us feel happy and trusting, and can even improve our body’s ability to heal and grow new cells.
Feeling of purpose.
Veterans tend to be natural protectors. They want to help others. They want to give. They want to be useful.
Adopting or fostering a rescue animal allows the veteran to provide for these needs, because they become responsible for the life of another living creature. Additionally, if the Veteran pursues pet therapy certification with their animal, it will enable them to give back to other Veterans and to society itself.
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