K9s For Warriors Reaches Milestone Achievement of 1,000 Veterans Paired with Life-Saving Service Dogs

By Pet Age Staff//March 25, 2024//

K9s For Warriors Reaches Milestone Achievement of 1,000 Veterans Paired with Life-Saving Service Dogs

By: Pet Age Staff//March 25, 2024//

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K9s For Warriors, the nation’s largest provider of trained service dogs for veterans with invisible wounds of war, recently announces a significant milestone in its mission to end veteran suicide. Retired Army staff sergeant Ryan and his service dog Frankie recently became the 1,000th Warrior/K9 team to walk across the stage at K9s For Warriors Shari Duval National Headquarters in Ponte Vedra, Florida.

The celebration of 1,000 Warrior lives saved is a testament to the dedication and unwavering support of K9s For Warriors’ team members, past and present, volunteers, donors and veteran families. Through their collective efforts, the organization has made great strides in its mission set forth by K9s For Warriors founder, the late Shari Duval. Now, 1,000 veterans from across the country have renewed hope, companionship and independence they deserve, all at no cost to the veteran.

Receiving a trained service dog at no cost was one of the significant reasons Ryan decided to apply to K9s after one of his mental health providers recommended a service dog to help him navigate his PTSD.

As the 1,000th veteran to graduate from K9s, Ryan shares the impact his Service Dog Frankie is already making in his life after three short weeks together.

“Frankie will help provide me the support I need when in high anxiety situations, to be more emotionally and mentally available for my family. He has already significantly reduced my anxiety and provides me comfort and support in what used to be high anxiety situations,” he said.

Since its inception in 2011, K9s For Warriors has remained steadfast in its commitment to saving lives at both ends of the leash. With most dogs being rescues, this innovative program allows the K9 and veteran with PTSD, traumatic brain injury, and/or military sexual trauma to build an unwavering bond that facilitates their collective healing and recovery.

“This month marks an extraordinary milestone for K9s For Warriors as we celebrate the graduation of our 1,000th Warrior paired with a life-saving Service Dog –1,000 unique Warrior lives saved,” says K9s For Warriors chief program officer Kevin Steele. “This achievement wouldn’t be possible without the unwavering dedication and support of so many – our team members, donors, partners and incredible volunteers. Together, as we celebrate transforming the lives of 1,000 veterans and their service dogs, we look to the next 1,000 ready to give them their new leash on life.”


(Photo courtesy K9s for Warriors)