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Audeamus Service Dogs is a partner on a project titled A PAWSitive Support Project for Veterans with PTSD and Who Problematically Use Substances out of the University of Saskatchewan and funded by Health Canada's Substance Use and Addiction Program.


The goal of this project is to have Canadian service dog organizations working with veterans diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) address recovery from problematic substance use, by using evidence-informed practice, with specific attention to substance use and distance peer support in their training programs.


The multidisciplinary team identifies problematic substance use as veterans’ disconnection from other humans, as well as animals and the environment. Combining these areas is an innovative and inclusive approach to recovery. In a stepped process over 3 years, the team is working alongside a dozen service dog programs working with veterans medically diagnosed with PTSD, including Audeamus Service Dogs.


Researchers from the University of Saskatchewan will develop (theory focused) and apply (practice focused) an evidence-informed substance use recovery toolkit with 30 veterans in the Audeamus Service Dogsprogram. They will then share the findings with the service dog organizations and mentor implementation of the toolkit. An external contractor to the project will evaluate the outcomes. 

Research Spotlight
Impact of Service Dogs in the Lives of Veterans  
Research Contact: Dr Colleen Bell
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