WINNER: Axel (Fredericksburg, VA) – Five years ago, now-retired Marines Captain Jason Haag was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury after returning from two combat tours in the Middle East. When he finally made it home, he was in a constant state of severe depression and mental agony. He struggled with alcohol abuse and took more than 303 medications to deal with his debilitating symptoms. In 2012, his wife urged him to reach out to K9s for Warriors, an organization that provides veterans with service canines, which is how he met who he calls his “lifesaver,” a German shepherd named Axel.
On deployment, every soldier is paired up with a battle buddy, and these days his battle buddy is not another Marine, but Axel. Day in and day out, Axel is by Captain Haag’s side, ensuring that he is in a constant state of peace and not fear. Sometimes all it takes is a little nudge from Axel to remind him that he is out of the combat zone. Other times, Axel goes into full activation mode, using his training to remove Captain Haag from an environment when a severe panic attack has …., Excerpt, please read more and learn more at the video on Youtube.com.