Anthony Reeder, Iraq veteran deals with his Post Traumatic Stress Disorder by training Peggy, his pit bull, to become a service dog.
“If we think about combining veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and shelter dogs, they have some of the same problems. Shelter dogs are very anxious. There are in a shelter through no fault of their own. They may exhibit a lot of fear and anxiety. Military veterans in different situations, large class situations may exhibit these anxiety symptoms. So putting them together to calm each other and relax together, and learn together seems like a very beneficial idea. (…) They have to work together as a team and because of that, they become very strongly bonded. When Anthony sowed his name badge onto the dog’s vest (…) I knew there were team.”
Rebecca Johnson – MU professor and director, Research Center for Human Animal Interaction
Animal therapy is an alternative PTSD treatment that helps PTSD patience to gain their confidence and feel more secure in public spaces.
Same therapy can be done using horses. For the last two years, Keith Kryger, Vietnam veteran rides his horse JD at Cedar Creek Therapeutic Center. Kryger suffers of PTSD but also recovered from a stroke. When he first went at Cedar Creek he couldn't walk on his own, now he rides alone.