The men and women who serve in the U.S. Military are heroes. They have accomplished so much in their military careers, but when they come home to the land that they protect, they are not the same. Shari Duval, who founded K9s for Warriors, stated, “Nobody is prepared for war.”
This is why she founded the nonprofit organization to help our troops who are having a hard time adjusting to normal life outside of war. The Department of Veteran Affairs has claimed that in 2014, an average number of 20 war veterans died of suicide on a daily basis. That is a very alarming number.
Studies have shown that female soldiers are more likely to be affected by PTSD compared to male soldiers. US Navy Chief Petty Officer Amanda Damasiewicz is among them. When Damasiewicz went to get professional help, she was diagnosed with manic depression and PTSD.
Her life started spiraling down. She became an alcoholic and would drink herself to sleep. She started smoking, and even tried to commit suicide twice. Her 11-year-old daughter didn’t know who she was anymore. She even called her mom a “monster.”
Damasiewicz attended psychiatric treatment, but it wasn’t helping her. She even claimed it made things worse. Months later, she got a call from K9s for Warriors. She was paired up with Lazer, a black lab who was trained as a therapy dog for war veterans having difficulties such as PTSD and depression.
The two hit it off, and Damasiewicz couldn’t be any happier. Before she had Lazer in her life, she slept on the floor, but now she went back to sleeping on her bed. Whenever Damasiewicz would have anxiety attacks, Lazer would lick her face to calm her down. Damasiewicz stated, “It’s just nice to have a buddy and companion to go everywhere with me.”
Thanks to our friends over at The Dodo for sharing the original story.