• Company pairs rescued dogs with veterans with PTSD

    By: Jeff Dore

    Updated:

    ATLANTA - A company that helps find lost dogs is teaming up with a program that helps veterans who feel lost in the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder.

    Channel 2's Jeff Dore learned how they hope to save lives of dogs and war veterans.    

    When David Jurado came home from a 15-month tour with the infantry in Iraq, his PTSD  left him isolated from his family and community. He couldn’t face supermarkets for fear an enemy could be approaching from behind.

    “Anger outburst, drinking, secluding myself away from everyone, including family,” he said. 

    Then he heard about Companions For Heroes, which matches veterans with dogs facing euthanasia in animal shelters and trains both to use the dog as a sort of canine therapist.

    “I’ve actually been able to lessen the medication that was prescribed to me,” Jurado said.

    He can now easily browse in a supermarket, knowing his dog, Willett, has his back. Having Willett, he said, “decreases the anxiety attacks, the panic attacks, the startles.”

    Providing the dogs and, more expensively, training them both to make the partnership work, costs thousands of dollars. Now, a for-profit business, Please Find My Dog, is helping to raise money.

    Please Find My Dog is an app that works like an Amber Alert for dogs, said Will Chase, a co-founder of Please Find My Dog. It is dedicating $5 from each subscription to Companions For Heroes.

    They can be found at facebook.com/PleaseFindMyDog. Companions for Heroes is http://www.companionsforheroes.org/  and /www.facebook.com/companionsforheroes.

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