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article imageIraq War Veteran receives government citation for therapy ducks

By Walter McDaniel     Jul 21, 2014 in Environment
West Lafayette - Veterans deal with post-war integration in many ways. Veteran Darin Welker handled it by taking care of 14 ducks which he used for therapeutic purposes. After a citation he worries his animals will be taken away.
Welker himself is recovering from a back injury. Doctors gave him treatment but no counseling for his wartime experiences. As a result he turned to caring for ducks to keep his mind calm and clear. He received notice that he would need to show up at court and pay a $150 fine for keeping the ducks in his yard. KOMO News 4 reported on this due to a story from the AP wire.
There is a significant amount of scientific evidence that animal therapy, of any kind, can have a positive impact on the human mind. Progress has even been made in the treatment of autism due to this therapy. Some studies even put forth the idea that therapy animals can smell cancer.
The question that is being debated is whether all creatures are therapy animals if they help someone. Studies centered on dogs show at length with positive results. Unfortunately other animals have barely been studied and even the tests done so far still need more review. As such we do not have a scientific basis for declaring ducks as therapy animals yet. Welker's case is bit harder to prove in his favor due to this.
More about Nature, Wildlife, Therapy, Iraq war, Veteran
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