Veterans Enjoy Day Of Wellness 

More than 75 veterans, first responders and their families recently enjoyed a special day of wellness courtesy of The Thomas School of Equestrian and Paws of War. Throughout the day, veterans and their families participated in activities including interactions with horses, pony rides with their service animals, various sporting activities, swimming, food and more. 

John Beck and his pet therapy dog, Penny, receive special Equestrian Therapy courtesy of The Thomas School of Horsemanship and Paws of War.

At the event hosted by The Thomas School at their facility in Melville, special equestrian comfort therapy was provided to veterans, some of whom are suffering from PTSD or TBI. Special therapy animals are trained to pick up stress signals amongst their owners and intervene to shift the focus back to a positive environment. Some trained animals are also able to pick up on the subtle changes in a handler’s mood, heart rate and stress levels and also assist during a medical or emotional emergency, aiding with memory-related tasks and providing security in public places. 

“It is important that we give back to the service men and women who have selflessly served our country. Providing days of wellness brings comfort to many veterans who are suffering from the emotional effects of war,” said Robert Misseri, president of Paws of War. “We are grateful for The Thomas School of Horsemanship for hosting Paws of War and our veterans on this special day.”  

Paws of War provides assistance, aid and a wide range of programs to active, retired and disabled military members. Some of their services includes providing veterans with specially trained PTSD and TBI service animals. Paws of War has experienced trainers who will train pets to become certified service animals.  

The Thomas School of Horsemanship and their equestrian and pony programs are aimed at teaching life lessons that will mold adults and children into responsible, caring and compassionate people. 

“Being able to provide our services to give back to our veterans and first responders is essential in providing them and their families with comfort. Paws of War and their veterans will always have a home here at The Thomas School of Horsemanship,” said Kim Peterson, Thomas School of Horsemanship.  

For more information about Paws of War, visit,

For more information about the Thomas School of Horsemanship, visit, 

Christy Hinko
Christy Hinko is a managing editor at Anton Media Group. She is a New York Press Association (NYPA) and Press Club of Long Island (PCLI) award-winning writer and photographer.

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