By ROB LARSON
Daily Press Staff Writer
As Jake Prentiss can attest, sometimes a loyal dog is better than even the best medication money can buy.
Prentiss, who was hired by the City of Artesia this past October as a wastewater supervisor, first noticed he was having trouble managing his anxiety and the stress resulting from his job when he was roughly 45 years old. After speaking with a VA Clinic psychiatrist, he discovered he was suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder, an anxiety disorder that typically results from a traumatic psychological event.
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To cope with his condition, it was suggested to Prentiss that he get an ADA service dog, much like those given to the blind or deaf. And since he received his ADA service dog, Big Red, almost 11 years ago, Prentiss said it is much easier to manage his anxiety than before.
“He’s helped me out quite a bit over the years,” Prentiss said. “I don’t take nearly as much medication as I used to for PTSD, and my anxiety isn’t as bad as it was before I got Red. Thanks to him, I only take two pills now when I used to need about six pills to get me through the day.”