EAV’s Paws for Peace service dog training program has developed after our initial recognition of the absence of opportunity for Maine veterans with PTSD or TBI to obtain service dogs which can help them manage their symptoms and experience more fulfilling lives. If a veteran does not already own a dog suitable for the program, EAV will help locate and adopt an appropriate canine. Paws for Peace participants and their dogs train as a team in a group setting with other veterans with instruction provided by professional canine handlers.
Four teams — each consisting of a veteran and a service dog — completed 16 weeks of training in January 2018. All four teams passed with flying colors. Our congratulations to all four teams for their persistence and accomplishment. And our thanks to the various mentors and trainers who guided these teams to success.
On August 23, 2016, after many weeks of attending weekly classes and many hours of training practice held at home, 4 veteran/dog teams earned their Service Dog Certification through our trainers North Edge K9. The testing took place at Home Depot in Bangor and was followed by a graduation celebration at the student union on the campus of University of Maine at Orono. During the 4 months of training these veterans reported diminishing symptoms of PTS/TBI such as a marked reduction in their level of anger which has promoted closer relationship with family members, the ability to go to the Old Port in Portland and walk the crowded sidewalks, enter shops and eat in a restaurant as a result of the security felt by having their service dog with them. Others reported feeling better because their service dog was trained to ring a bell to remind the veteran to take morning medications. The service dogs were also taught to respond to the veterans’ anxiety attacks, anger, sadness or frustration by soothing the vet with leaning, pawing and/or nuzzling their veteran. Congratulations to these veterans for their hard work and determination in successfully completing this course. They will be wonderful ambassadors of Embrace A Vet’s Paws for Peace program, North Edge K9 and the entire service dog industry.
June, 2016: It’s Bosun the dog and veteran Mike being trained by Tom at North Edge K9. The dog is learning how to remind Mike to take his medication.
It was a great day at Cabela’s as The Gorham EAV service dog class led by North Edge K9s practiced their public access work…looking good!!!!
Following are three links to three videos made during service dog training in February, 2016.
View service dogs at work ….
pretend crisis and service dog’s response