Rocky Kanaka's Short Film Showcases The Impact Rescue Dogs Can Have On Military Veterans, & Vice Versa
SAN DIEGO, Aug. 17, 2022 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- Rocky Kanaka uses his multi-media presence to advocate for animals in need around the world, but his most recent project also has a human focus. In his new short film, Rocky Kanaka explores the experience of a returning military Veteran and his new dog, highlighting a variety of much needed programs now available around the country.
In these programs, Veterans are paired with rescue dogs who have been carefully selected for their temperament, interest in humans, and ability to pick up on important training. After assessment and preparation with one of the many nonprofits that train military Veteran companion dogs, these rescue dogs are paired with Veterans seeking emotional support and therapy dogs.
Returning from active duty is not a straightforward process, and more than 20% of Veterans experience PTSD following their military career.
- 500,000 U.S. Veterans are currently experiencing PTSD
- Many vets with PTSD are without treatment or active support
Without appropriate resources and treatment for returning Veterans, many will suffer, often in silence. But there is one overlooked resource that few Veterans know about. There may be a dog in a shelter in their town right now, waiting for them, if they only knew.
In the United States, 400,000 dogs are euthanized each year, primarily due to shelter overcrowding. Many of the shelters forced to euthanize their dogs partner with these non-profit organizations to pair vets with specially trained and 'vetted' dogs.
With hundreds of thousands of dogs flooding local shelters and rescues each year, there are so many opportunities for returning Veterans to find a dog that fits their needs; but first, they need to know about this important community resource available to Veterans in pain right now. Bringing awareness to this topic can save a Veteran's life and a dog's life as well.
"Dogs offer vets something humans can't: an unbreakable, unconditional bond that is inherently free of judgment," Rocky said.
Studies also suggest that human-animal relationships reduce stress, fear, anxiety, and even cardiovascular disease. In particular, for Veterans with PTSD, a relationship with a therapy or emotional support dog can help alleviate symptoms, and even reduce the severity and frequency of flashbacks.
The breed, size, and history of the dog don't matter; it's all about finding the right fit for the Vetern's personality, lifestyle, and needs, and shelter dogs are as different as snowflakes.
Some people falsely believe that therapy and emotional support dogs must be purebred, but there is no evidence to suggest that purebred dogs make better companions for anyone (Veterans included) than mutts.
"Some people believe that shelter dogs with unknown histories may be unpredictable, but the truth is that any dog can be unpredictable," Rocky said. "In many cases, shelter dogs are more fit for a life with a nervous or anxious person, as they themselves may have experienced scary things, or may feel isolated."
Rocky continues, "By pairing humans in need with dogs in need, incredible bonds form that can only come from a mutual understanding."
Fun fact: The canine star in the video, Bingo, is actually a shelter dog at the San Gabriel Valley Humane Society. She was given the role, instead of a canine actor, in hopes that the exposure from the video would help her get adopted.
- For more information on Bingo, visit her adoption page.
- To watch the short film and learn more about how rescue dogs and Veterans work together visit: https://rockykanaka.com/service-dogs-for-veterans/
About Rocky Kanaka:
Rocky is a pet rescue advocate, Emmy Nominated TV host, and content creator. His videos and social channels spread awareness about pet adoption, fostering, and volunteering with the goal of inspiring his audience to help animals in their local community.
Through his work, Rocky hopes to dismantle false stereotypes about shelter dogs and misunderstood breeds, find homes for abandoned, abused, and neglected animals, and get the word out about life-changing programs like those we've featured in this short film.
Originally from the islands of Hawaii, Rocky now calls Southern California his home. Rocky, and his wife Kelly, are pet parents to a rescue boxer named Flip, a terrier mix named Zoey, and Kobe, a blind cane corso. And…all the foster dogs they rehabilitate until they find their forever homes.
Lorna Paxton Ladd, Rocky Kanaka Media, 1 7146336516, [email protected]
SOURCE Rocky Kanaka Media