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Animal Assisted Therapy

What is Animal Assisted Therapy at the NICoE?

The mission-based trauma recovery program at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE) is a hands on, goal oriented, clinically based intervention program. The program engages Wounded Warriors in the mission of training purpose bred service dogs to assist fellow veterans with mobility and impairment issues.

Who can benefit from Animal Assisted Therapy?

Any Wounded Warrior struggling from traumatic brain injury and/or post-traumatic stress disorder who is interested in helping to train a future service dog for a veteran in order to help him/her reintegrate into their community.

What are the benefits of Animal Assisted Therapy?

This is a unique opportunity for the patient to assist in changing the lives of a future veteran. In doing so, the patient will be assisting in teaching a service dog in training how to become a highly-skilled military service bred dog who will be paired up with a future veteran upon successful completion of the program. Patients will be helping a veteran reintegrate into the community and set them up for future success with their loyal companion. This opportunity will help to improve cognitive, behavioral, social and emotional competencies. It can have a tremendous impact on improving self awareness, self confidence and parenting/relationship skills.

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Article Around MHS
Aug 18, 2023

Pet Therapy at Keesler: Creating a Paw-sitive Environment

An airman in training from the 81st Training Group plays with a therapy dog at the Levitow Training Support Facility on Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, on July 13, 2023. Volunteer teams of therapy animals and their handlers visit the 81st TRG weekly to help alleviate stress for airmen. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kimberly L. Tou)

Overall, both military men and women are nearly twice as likely to report feeling high levels of stress in their military work (39%) than in their family life (22%), according to the National Library of Medicine. Keesler Air Force Base in Mississippi provides multiple resources for airmen and their families who may need physical or psychological ...

Article Around MHS
Aug 1, 2023

Bayne-Jones Army Community Hospital Celebrates Dog Days of Summer

Piper, an English Bulldog, loves sleeping and cuddling with her human, Carmen Rutledge, a military health assistant with managed care at BJACH.  (Photo: Carmen Rutledge)

“Dogs are like little mood boosters in hospitals,” said U.S. Army Capt. James Walker, hospital chaplain of Bayne-Jones Army Community Hospital. He submitted a photo of his dog, Scout, to participate in DHA's Dog Days of Summer campaign, which raises awareness of facility dogs across the MHS. Everyone, including the hospital and dental commander, and ...

Jul 19, 2023

Defense Health Agency Kicks Off Dog Days of Summer, Showcases Dogs Who Support Overall Health

Brooke Army Medical Center facility dog U.S. Army Maj. Budd interacts with soldiers being in-processed in August 2022. Facility dogs are being given honorary commissions or are enlisted in a service as a mark of respect for their value in comforting personnel in need and increasing morale and mental health. (Photo: Jennifer Higgins, special assistant for healthcare resolutions BMAC)

This week, the Defense Health Agency is celebrating facility dogs assigned to military hospitals across the nation for its “Dog Days of Summer” campaign July 24-28. DHA will spotlight stories of hard-working dogs dedicated to keeping service members, their families, and hospital staff healthy and happy.

Last Updated: July 11, 2023
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