What is the process for applying for a dog
We receive many applications from veterans who are being treated for PTSD, TBI or MST. But sometimes, the applications are submitted prematurely. Hopefully we can explain the process here so veterans and their therapists or doctors wanting to know what those steps are will have clear direction.
- If you are being treated for depression or anxiety that is related to a specific event in the military which is the cause of your PTSD, but the PTSD or TBI has not yet been recognized by the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) you are still too early in the process and will need to go to your County Veteran Service Officer (CVSO) first to have them submit the proper application to the DVA on your behalf. The CVSO will explain that process to you. We do not have anything to do with that. See phone list below for 14 counties in Minnesota.
- To qualify for enrollment into our programs, your PTSD or TBI injuries “must be service connected and you must have already received a disability rating and benefits letter from the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) for PTSD and or TBI related injuries as diagnosed and treated by VA Doctors, VA therapists, or CBOC social workers and doctors. This (DVA) letter will state that you have received a disability rating of 10% or higher for PTSD, TBI or MST and is service connected.
- If you have this, then the next step would be to fill out the two page on-line application found on our site at http://petsloyal2vets.org/companions/
- Once we receive this initial application, we will contact you for a short phone interview. Upon completion and only if you qualify, we will then e-mail you the full 14 page application which must be completed and US Mailed back to our office.
- Once we receive your packet, we will contact you to come in for a two-hour interview where we get to know you and how we can help in training a dog for your specific needs as well as for you to know us and ask questions.
- Once that is completed, we determine if you can take a dog right away or if we need to do all the training. Depending on the type of dog you will need and your specific needs, if you are unable to assist in the training right away, it could take from 8 weeks to 2 years to get a dog for you. The fastest way to get you a dog is for you to be a part of the training process. This will also help you going forward in knowing how to handle your new dog in public.
- We then determine the type of dog, size, age and type of training that will best suit your needs and living arrangements.
A dog from Pets Loyal 2 Vets is only for the veteran on the application and is not to be used for any other person or any other reason. We do not sell dogs either like for profit kennel operators. We will only train dogs for DVA qualified veterans enrolled in our programs and all services and dogs are free of charge to that veteran. We do not charge the VA or any other agency, group or person. Please understand, we have strict guidelines for a reason. By compiling the documents you will need ahead of time will speed up the process for you on our end, but if you do not qualify and are trying to get a dog before you have all the required documents, your application will be delayed.
All information in this and other forms we receive are kept in the strictest of confidence. If your VA determination letter does not rate you 10% or higher for “service connected” PTSD or TBI then this application is premature for you. Remember, you must already be service connected and possess a Veterans Affairs ID card. One other requirement we have is that you must have already received treatment or therapy for one of these three qualifying injuries before we can accept you into our program. If you have any other symptoms you are being treated for but you are not DVA recognized for PTSD, TBI or MST then this program is not for you and you should consult with your doctors on the best treatments available.
We have strict qualifications to ensure all veterans accepted are accepted for service connected in juries and have already received one or more therapies or treatments provided by a VA medical facility. If your injury is service connected but you have not received treatment or therapy through the VA system, then you are too early for our program. Once your completed packet has been received and we have determined you are qualified, we will then begin to search for a dog that will meet your needs.
Here is a list of some of the Veteran Service offices in Minnesota by county: If you have never filed for a disability for a service connected injury such as PTSD or TBI, your County Veteran Service Officer is the place to start the paperwork for the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Anoka 763-323-5290 Blue Earth 507-304-4246 Carver 952-442-2323 Crow Wing 218-824-1058 Dakota 651-554-5601 Hennepin 612-348-3300 Isanti 763-689-3591 Kandiyohi 320-231-6226 LeSueur 507-357-8279 McLeod 320-864-1268 Meeker 320-693-5445 Nicollet 507-934-7870 Olmsted 507-328-6355 Ramsey 651-266-2545 Renville 320-523-3763 Rice 507-332-6117 Scott 952-496-8176 Sibley 507-237-4090 St.Louis 218-725-5285 Stearns 320-656-6176 Washington 651-430-6895 Wright 763-682-7326