Pets can play a major role in supporting a person with PTSD and other emotional and physical conditions.
Recently the Australian government has announced financial backing to trial assistance dogs with veterans. The dogs will be specifically matched to veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
The trial will involve matching the specific needs of the participating veteran to the most appropriate breed and temperament of the dog, and the bonding process between the dog and participant.
Assistance dogs differ from companion dogs. Assistance dogs are part of a clinical care plan involving the veteran and their mental health clinician. These dogs are specially trained to perform tasks that contribute to the clinical recovery goals of the individual.
Assistance dogs learn to detect signs of distress and perform specific tasks to help lessen those symptoms.
The link between animals and supporting us in a therapeutic role has been understood for many years. As that understanding increases, they can become an essential part of recovery as well as providing companionship.
At Retreat South pets are welcome as we understand the bond between people and their pets can be very important in the recovery process.