9/11 First Responder: How My Service Dog Helps Me Heal

Before [my service dog] Bernie, I buried the hurt and shame, and dealt with crippling depression and anxiety. Today, I feel myself starting to heal.

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Fifteen years after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, former EMT and first-responder Jaime Hazan has found a combination of techniques that work to counteract his post-traumatic stress—and one of them is an adorable Golden Doodle pup named Bernie. In addition to medication and other traditional therapies, Bernie is there to help Jaime cope with things like night terrors, asthma attacks, and social anxiety. Within just a few months of owning Bernie, Jaime has seen the very real difference a service dog can make—and now hopes to help other 9/11 responders get the same kind of four-legged help.