Acuity: Supports bringing canine companionship to veterans through Dogs2DogTags

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a crisis among U.S. military veterans, and canine companionship can make a real difference in the fight against an incredibly high veteran suicide rate.

Based in Sheboygan Falls, Dogs2DogTags rescues at-risk and shelter dogs, trains them, and places them with deserving service members across the country who have been diagnosed with post-combat stress and anxiety. There is no cost to the veteran to receive a trained dog, and they gain a constant companion to help them cope with the unique challenges of their everyday life.

Acuity recently contributed $2,500 to the organization in support of its mission, and Acuity employees are involved with Dogs2DogTags as well.

Matt, a 12-year veteran of the Army National Guard who served two tours of duty in the Middle East, was recently paired with Ernie through the organization. Ernie had been adopted as a puppy by a veteran who later passed away. Ernie ended up in a kill shelter before being rescued by Dogs2DogTags. Matt and Ernie had an instant bond that has continued to grow. 

“Having a connection with Ernie has been incredibly helpful from a mental health standpoint,” Matt said. “Veterans often struggle with issues around safety and trust, particularly after being deployed in a combat setting. The awesome thing about a dog is there is always complete trust—they are always loyal and that helps you build confidence within yourself.”  

Donations to Dogs2DogTags are vital to helping the organization fulfill its mission of helping veterans cope with stress.

“On average, 18 veterans commit suicide every day. It’s a shocking statistic that can be changed with programs like ours,” said Pam Wittkopp, Dogs2DogTags Executive Director and Commercial Lines Consultant at Acuity. “We live our mission of saving vets one dog at a time.”

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Acuity Insurance, headquartered in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, insures over 125,000 businesses, including 300,000 commercial vehicles, and nearly a half million homes and private passenger autos across 29 states. Rated A+ by A.M. Best and S&P, Acuity employs over 1,400 people.