Loving Veterans To Life

General Eligibility Requirements

General Eligibility Requirements

The Gunnar Center assists veterans in the training of their own service dogs for those who struggle with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and Military Sexual Trauma (MST).

Applicants must agree to follow the Gunnar Center standards of care and ethics for working dogs; including adhering to all exercise, health, behavior and training regiments. In addition, all applicants must commit to maintaining the training level of each dog and give it opportunities to use its skills. Applicants must attend weekly training classes at the GC headquarters, participate in group outings and participate in ongoing follow-up visits and training for the lifetime of the partnership.

Service Dog Applicants Must:

  • Be a Veteran or in the later stages of the process of medical evaluation for separation from the military.
  • Have the support and a referral from your Health Care Provider for obtaining an assistance dog.
  • Have a disability that impacts your quality of life, independence and ability to engage in activities of daily living. We assist you in training your dog to assist you in managing your PTSD, TBI and/or MST.
  • Be able to describe how an assistance dog would help increase your independence and engagement in daily occupations.
  • Be willing and able to provide for the dog’s physical, emotional and financial needs.
  • If applying for a service dog for a psychiatric disability, you must be successfully engaged in your individualized treatment program related to your specific diagnosis for a minimum of six months.
  • Strive to have a positive, “can do” attitude and effectively implement emotional regulation tools/techniques as needed.
  • Have a stable home environment and support of all other household and family members.
  • Have a desire for more independence.
  • Be financially stable.
  • Have an open mind and willingness to learn.
  • Must be able to commit to consistent at home training of your dog outside of group sessions.
  • Be able to attend consistent weekly training classes and group outings. Multiple abscesses will result in dismal from the program and need to reapply.

*Adapted from Warrior Canine Connection