Why the V.A. Won't Pay for Service Dogs to Treat PTSD
On a sunny October day in 2017, Lara Trump, the president’s daughter-in-law, held a meeting in the West Wing to promote an initiative that would pair shelter dogs needing homes with veterans wanting to act on the increasingly widespread notion that well-trained dogs can improve the lives of people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental-health conditions.
Sitting at a long wooden table in the Roosevelt Room, Trump lobbied the leaders of the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Humane Society of the United States. She also showed her support for the Puppies Assisting Wounded Service members (PAWS) Act, a piece of bipartisan legislation first introduced in 2016 that would establish a grant program pairing veterans with psychiatric service dogs, which are rigorously trained to help their owners cope with stress, anxiety or fear.
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