Pitbull provides emotional support to woman suffering from PTSD

Stephanie Roberts' emotional support dog, Milenko, helps her overcome memories of trauma. (WSYX/WTTE)

Stephanie Roberts doesn't like to leave her home without 'Man's Best Friend.' And her friend is 2-year-old Milenko, a pit bull she adopted when the dog was 10 weeks old.

Milenko isn't just for her protection, he helps her cope with trauma she's had to live with over the past two years.

"I'm nervous, I've got PTSD from an event that happened in the past, " she said. "A couple of years ago our home was broken into, I was raped. My fiance was beat up and our dog was killed."

Milenko serves has her emotional support dog. At 80 pounds, while he may make some quiver, he helps Stephanie stay calm and face the world.

"He keeps me calm, if I'm getting nervous he actually nudges me to get my attention to him. He helps me take my mind off of things," she said.

She says she knows he's not what people think of when they imagine a therapy dog. And although he's not licensed or certified, She says once Milenko puts on his harness, he somehow knows his job is to comfort her.

In fact, she took him to court last month while she took the stand about the burglary.

"We took him there and he acted like he's been doing this all of his life," she said.

Stephanie wants people to see how loving pit bulls can be.

"They're very good dogs. All they want to do is please you and make you happy," she said.

According to the American Kennel Society: To be legally considered an emotional support dog, dogs need to be prescribed by a licensed mental health professional .

To qualify as a Therapy Dog - The dogs do go through a number of hours of training.

Service dogs are trained to do a specific task.

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