For the Battle-Scarred, Comfort at Leash’s End

Just weeks after Chris Goehner, 25, an Iraq war veteran, got a dog, he was able to cut in half the dose of anxiety and sleep medications he took for post-traumatic stress disorder. The night terrors and suicidal thoughts that kept him awake for days on end ceased.

Stephen Crowley/The New York Times

The dogs learn to fetch, turn lights on and off and even dial 911.

Stephen Crowley/The New York Times

At the Mid-Orange Correctional Facility in Warwick, N.Y., service dogs share a room with the prisoners who help train them.

Aaron Ellis, 29, another Iraq veteran with the stress disorder, scrapped his medications entirely soon after getting a dog — and set foot in a grocery store for the first time in three years.


Disaster is a time to focus on God's love

We are one human family, and when one part of the family bleeds, we all hurt. We want our country and its citizens to do what they can to provide aid, as well as hope, to this small ravaged nation.

We wonder where is God in the midst of such a disaster. God has promised to be with those who mourn, as well as those who offer aid. God was with those who used their bare hands and rudimentary tools to dig survivors from the rubble. God is with those still wailing the loss of loved ones, and with those who bury the dead.

God is with the relief workers who hand out water and hug now-orphaned children. God is with those who texted $10 to the Red Cross and with those who gave through their churches, synagogues or mosques.

Natural disasters are not God's retribution, but an opportunity for God's people to show love, compassion, forgiveness and mercy.


This is what faith is really about, not the people who spread hatred and racism, such as Pat Robertson.

Statement by the President on Hajj and Eid-ul-Adha

Michelle and I would like to send our best wishes to all those performing Hajj this year, and to Muslims in America and around the world who are celebrating Eid-ul-Adha.  The rituals of Hajj and Eid-ul-Adha both serve as reminders of the shared Abrahamic roots of three of the world’s major religions.

During Hajj, the world’s largest and most diverse gathering, three million Muslims from all walks of life – including thousands of American Muslims – will stand in prayer on Mount Arafat.  The following day, Muslims around the world will celebrate Eid-ul-Adha and distribute food to the less fortunate to commemorate Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son out of obedience to God.

This year, I am pleased that the Department of Health and Human Services has partnered with the Saudi Health Ministry to prevent and limit the spread of H1N1 during Hajj.  Cooperating on combating H1N1 is one of the ways we are implementing my administration's commitment to partnership in areas of mutual interest.

On behalf of the American people, we would like to extend our greetings during this Hajj season – Eid Mubarak.


Eid mubarak!