A therapy dog will help Iraq war veteran Gregory handle the effects of PTSD

By Kelli Bender
June 14, 2016 09:02 PM
Courtesy of Big Dreams Gregory

Gregory needs the love of a certain kind of friend. 

In the years following combat, the Iraq war veteran has been plagued with night terrors that leave him incapacitated for days at a time. This devastating case of post-traumatic stress disorder has forced Gregory to go on disability. 

But there is hope for a more peaceful and active future.With a PTSD therapy dog, Gregory can start to reclaim his life again. With this specially-trained buddy, the veteran will have an understanding companion with him wherever he goes. A therapy dog will encourage him to go outside, interact with others and take care of himself. These canines are also trained to help PTSD sufferers navigate through stressful situations, block triggers and wake from night terrors. 

To help make this need a reality, Gregory has started a Go Fund Me Page to raise money to pay for the dog’s training with Educated Canines Assisting with Disabilities and care. He is looking to raise $30,000 to cover the expenses. 

Courtesy of Big Dreams Gregory

“The sooner I can raise the funds and pay for my dog, the sooner I will be able to start living a normal life,” Gregory writes on his page. 

The veteran is receiving some assistance from philanthropist Leon Logothetis, in collaboration with LittleThings.com, who was moved by Gregory’s struggle and dedication to treating his PTSD. 

“I experienced emotional trauma when I was badly bullied as a child and I feel a deep connection and empathy for what these heroes have experienced,” Logothetis told PEOPLE. “Gregory mentioned how he has night terrors, and although my night terrors are far less severe than Gregory’s, I know what it’s like to be unable to sleep and suffer shaming bouts of night terrors.”

Courtesy of Big Dreams Gregory

The philanthropist hopes that with his help and the assistance of others, Gregory can reclaim his life. 

“If I can empower someone to believe in themselves then my day is complete. The feeling of ‘being seen’ is such a powerful thing, and yet so many of us feel ‘unseen’ and ‘invisible.’ I consider my philanthropic work simply about ‘seeing’ people. It doesn’t have to be a big financial commitment – the most important thing is to see our each other and recognize that everyone has value,” Logothetis shared.

Once Gregory raises the money needed for a therapy dog, he plans to use any extra funds and his extra to time to help other veterans find the same comfort.