K9 Partners For Patriots program is unique in that they integrate the Veteran into the dog’s training in small group sessions from day one. This allows the Veteran and dog to build a bond of trust, communication and companionship. By doing this, they are able to assist the veteran in learning how to recognize their dog’s response to their personal needs. The end result is to help them refocus on the task at hand instead of themselves and the issues that are causing their anxieties and redeem their sense of mastery.
Using a group technique of training helps the veteran to integrate back into a social environment which in turn, helps their family life and day-to-day living. This, along with the physiological and psychological benefits of having the dog with them 24/7 is life changing for these men and women. Those unable to leave their home are able, with the assistance of their dog, to gain independence which would not have been possible otherwise.
This training program, including the purchase of a dog, service vest and all equipment necessary is provided to the Veteran at no cost. In order to qualify for this program, the veteran must have an honorable discharge with DD214, must have a letter from Physician/Counselor or VA Award letter stating diagnosis of service-related PTSD or TBI, must provide a letter from Physician/Counselor that they are medically, mentally and physically able to handle the responsibilities of owning a dog and cannot be convicted of a felony, sexual offense or any type of animal abuse.
Veterans must be able to travel to the training campus for all weekly training sessions for a period of 19 weeks.