This is Nyssa, a four year old English Labrador PTSD service dog trained at Hero Pups, a New Hampshire based organization that was founded by Laura Barker after her son was wounded in Afghanistan. Hero Pups provides veterans and first responders with service dogs and Nick is a retired fire-fighter that suffers from PTSD. Nyssa has drastically improved his quality of life and alerts him when he needs medication, comforts/touches him when he’s showing signs of anxiety, hugs him when instructed, and even wakes him in the middle of a nightmare. People with PTSD don’t like it when people get too close to them and so she does “crowd control, inserting herself between them and Nick acting as sort of a buffer! She knows how to do Deep Pressure Therapy (I’ll go into this more in a later post). She can even help him find his car in a parking lot (we all know how it feels when we can’t remember where we parked)!