“Slate saved my life,” is the way John Wiesniewski describes having a
service dog like Slate by his side every day.
SSD Slate, a black Labrador, is trained as a psychiatric support service dog by Susquehanna Service Dogs (SSD), located in Grantville, Pennsylvania. These dogs are often placed with military veterans suffering from depression, severe anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
In late 2011, Slate was paired with another veteran–retired first sergeant Brian Coutch who died in 2014.
John, with a voice filled with awe and emotion, explains what he learned about how he came to be given this dog later in 2014: “Brian always told his family that if anything ever happened to him, the family should return Slate to Susquehanna Service Dogs so another placement could be made.
“Brian was watching out for his brothers even at the very end.”
Here is Slate’s story. Continue reading