Leashes of Valor recently partnered with Thomas Jefferson College of Nursing (JCN) to research the effectiveness of service dogs, as a treatment for veterans who suffer from Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other cognitive disorders.

While a considerable amount of anecdotal evidence suggests service dogs are helpful, the goal of this ground-breaking initiative will be to form the scientific foundation necessary to evaluate service dogs as a form of evidence-based treatment. In turn, the research could lay the groundwork needed to deem the treatment “medically necessary.” This designation would vastly expand the accessibility of service dogs for veterans, who continue to return home wounded after serving in trouble spots around the world.

Heading up the work for JCN will be assistant professors, Dr. Jennifer Shiroff and Dr. Jacquelyn O’Rourke-Fulford. The pair will be joined by several prominent nurse scientists that JCN recruited for the research. Their efforts will be supported by an infrastructure put in place by the school’s academic leadership to promote innovations in treatment.

We are calling on all veterans with a trained service dog and a diagnosis of PTSD or TBI to help by participating in a brief interview. The question and answer can be conducted in person or via a phone call. Please read the attached flier to see if you qualify. LOV FLyer Compensation is available. To participate, contact: Research@leashesofvalor.org or Jennifer.shiroff@jefferson.edu.