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Description

This study explored the lived experiences of Operational Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) service members with combatrelated posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms who had a companion animal postdeployment. Twelve OEF and OIF veterans participated in semi-structured interviews analyzed using Moustakas’ phenomenological approach. Four themes emerged: (a) rich descriptions of deployment events, (b) the experiences of returning from a deployment, (c) participants’ perceptions on their pets’ influence on posttraumatic stress symptoms, and (d) other comments and opinions related to participants’ experiences. These findings illuminate the experience of combat-related posttraumatic stress and the importance of animals in the therapeutic process and may aid development of alternative treatment options.

Publication Date

2014

City

National Harbor, MD

Keywords

Research Symposium

Disciplines

Other Psychiatry and Psychology | Other Psychology

The Human-Animal Bond and Combat-Related Posttraumatic Stress

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