You’ve seen dogs do a lot of things. They can easily become loving service animals. Similarly, these wolves are being trained to help veterans coping with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD affects an estimated 7.8% percent of Americans at some point in their lives and the number for veterans is higher. An estimated 31 percent of Vietnam veterans suffer from symptoms of PTSD and as many as eleven percent of soldiers returning from Afghanistan.
At this facility in Frazier Park, California, rescued wolves help them heal. It’s a project called Warriors and Wolves and the co-founder Matthew Simmons, a veteran himself, says, “There’s something about being part of nature. There’s something about being around these animals. To even the most wounded veteran, they feel different. It keeps them a part of something greater than themselves.”
This is the case with Jim Minick who had trouble coping before entering the program. “They kind of teach you how to be calm and confident. It’s got some deeper meaning when they accept you.”