Watch CBS News

Massachusetts organization trains service dogs to help support veterans

Massachusetts organization trains service dogs for veterans
Massachusetts organization trains service dogs for veterans 02:07

DEVENS – Clear Path for Veterans New England, a Massachusetts organization, is making sure those who have served have the support they need.

Clear Path for Veterans New England trains service dogs for veterans after they return home from combat.

Nicholas Nadeau, a service dog program administrator for Clear Path, is lucky to be alive.

"I was wounded with a roadside bomb in Fallujah, Iraq. I took some shrapnel to my head," he said.

Thankfully Nadeau survived and now he's giving back through Clear Path and its service dog program. Nadeau trains canines so they can become paired with veterans.

"It takes about a year and a half to two years to train one service dog. It's anywhere from $25,000 to $30,000 to train one service dog. We work off of grants and donations," Nadeau said.

The service dog program though is just one cog in a bigger picture.

"This is just an amazing place. I get so much more out of it than what I put into it. It's just great to come in every day," said Donna Bulger, executive director of Clear Path.

The object of this nonprofit is to make sure veterans venture out and help one another.

"Our main goal here is to make sure nobody falls through the cracks, while we provide getting people out of this isolated and sheltered mechanism life that we build as veterans," said Lars Landers, director of integrated wellness.

The service dog program is a perfect way to make sure some veterans are never alone.

"We look at, how does this dog help a veteran? But it does much more than help the veteran," Nadeau said. "It helps the veteran's family because they are able to do more. They are able to be part of the family with the assistance of the dog."   

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.