Lexington, South Carolina
My dog Pablo is only a year old but has brought me so much joy. I’m an Army combat veteran who suffers from PTSD and anxiety. I have been out a few years now and often wondered why I had extreme anxiety everywhere I went. My counselor told me hypervigilance and anxiety stem from Combat. After considering my options, I applied to SD4V (Service Dogs for Veterans) and we were accepted into the program! Pablo is already trained in several tasks to assist me, for example: he will give me his undivided attention when I give him the command “eyes”. This is needed when we are out and something or someone distracts him. He has also been trained to give hugs and kisses when I feel panicky. He will put his chin on my leg when I am feeling anxious and he will always have my back (while walking to face behind me and stand in between my legs in order to make sure there is no threat coming up behind me).
He has changed my life in so may ways including my level of anxiety and my PTSD symptoms have gone down drastically. Entering into the program was one of the best things I have ever done!