Service dogs graduate from the Patriot K9′s of Wisconsin
Nonprofit organization trains dogs for disabled veterans
WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - A class from the Patriot K9′s of Wisconsin graduated on Saturday. The patriot K9′s of Wisconsin train psychiatric service dogs for disabled veterans who suffer from military sexual trauma, PTSD, and traumatic brain injuries.
“Having a service dog is like having a chance at a new life,” said Scot Miller, a retired law enforcement officer.
The veterans train their service dogs for about 30 weeks with the help of the nonprofit organization.
“Most of the people have tried everything from therapy and medications and sometimes a service dog is that extra tool in the toolbox to overcome their challenges,” said Lani Rethaber, the executive director for the Patriot K9′s of Wisconsin.
Miller got his dog, Buddy, when he was 8 weeks old. Miller would drive from Green Bay to Wausau every Wednesday to train Buddy with the Patriot K9s.
“There are so many veterans that are committing suicide. I mean the national average right now is 20- 22 dying of suicide a day,” said Miller.
Miller said Buddy helps him navigate through everyday life.
“He recognizes, in me, when I’m all stressed or if I have anxiety,” said Miller.
The K9′s were given vests that displayed their official title as service dogs at the end of the graduation ceremony.
The Patriot K9′s of Wisconsin would like to remind people that service dogs are not regular dogs people can interact with. The service dogs are doing a job and should not be touched.
Copyright 2022 WSAW. All rights reserved.