The efficacy of paws4people placements with Veterans was studied in a quantitative research project by Kaiser Permanente Northwest (KPNW) in Oregon and Georgia (KPG) entitled, “An Observational Study of Service Dogs for Veterans with PTSD.” Study results were published online on March 17, 2017 in Psychiatric Services, a Journal of the American Psychiatric Association. Researchers at KPNW and KPG collaborated with 5 not-for-profit organizations that train dogs for Veterans with PTSD. paws4people was 1 of those 5 organizations. Researchers matched 22 veterans with self-reported PTSD with service dogs (also known as Assistance Dogs) trained to assist Veterans with the condition. Veterans reported significant improvements in depression, activity levels, and happiness. The dogs helped Veterans cope with distressing memories and flashbacks, avoid panic, and create comfortable space between themselves and strangers. Due to the importance of their findings, researchers recommended a randomized controlled trial with long-term follow up.
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