New bill will make adopting and training service dogs easier for vets
WASHINGTON D.C. - The U.S. House of Representatives has just approved a bill that would expand opportunities for veterans to get involved with training and adopting service dogs.
The PAWS for Veterans Therapy Act, H.R. 4305, will create a pilot program at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affair. This program should help individuals with post-deployment mental health disorders by pairing them with a service dog. This program will let veterans train the dogs and then, if they wish, be able to adopt the dogs as their own after training.
The measure passed by the house with voice vote. The issue had bipartisan support.
Once the service dogs are trained they can alert their owners of PTSD triggers or unanticipated risks. They can also help to reduce their handlers’ anxiety by providing security and a calming effect.
Any dog breed can serve, including mixed breeds and animals rescued from shelters.