Evans, Georgia – Dozens of local veterans now have service dogs thanks to a local organization. On Saturday 36 veterans gathered at the Columbia County Library to see their rescued dogs graduate from different levels of service training.
These dogs have to go through weeks of training, rain or shine, to learn skills that save lives. The organization, Veterans K-9 Solutions, strongly believes that through saving a dog, they can rehabilitate a Veteran.
“To give these veterans a better quality of life,” said Jerry Lydia, CEO and Founder of Veterans K-9 Solutions.
Home of the free because of the brave men and women who fight for our country, but coming home and re-adjusting is not always easy.
“I had been through all the treatments I could possibly go through that I was aware of at the VA and I just needed something else because it just wasn’t enough,” said veteran William Mosley.
Now, many veterans are turning to Veterans K-9 Solutions. The nonprofit takes dogs off death row in shelters and trains them as service dogs.
“He saves my life everyday.” Said Mosley.
Giving dogs and veterans another another chance at life.
“With this dog they can have a quality of life where they can go places, they can do things. They can enjoy life the way it should be enjoyed,” Lydia said.
CEO and Founder Jerry Lydia says the VA doesn’t recognize service dogs as therapy because not enough studies have been done.
“All they have to do is ask any one of these individuals out here what that dog has done for them,” Lydia told News Channel 6.
“This gives us the freedom to go out and be in the community and be a part of society again,” said veteran Danny Williams.
But for the veterans who have had these dogs for a while, the K-9’s are proving to truly be man’s best friend.
“I ran my truck off the road one day during a flash back and he was in my lap bringing me back from that and I was able to get control of my truck and bring it back on Gordon Highway,” Mosley told News Channel 6.
On Saturday, September 26th, the group is doing a K-9 for Heroes Ride starting at Augusta Harley Davidson to raise money for a indoor training facility.