Service Animal Support
You’ve been diagnosed with PTSD, depression or anxiety and you’ve always loved dogs.
In an article by Kaitlyn Arford entitled 10 Science-Based Benefits of Having a Dog, there are ten different studies about our canine friends that identify the following:
1.Dog ownership reduces loneliness
2.Dog owners have lower blood pressure levels and improved responses to stress
3.Dogs help alleviate stress and anxiety
4.Military veterans with PTSD do better both physiologically and psychologically when they have a service dog
5.Dog owners are nearly four times more likely than non-dog owners to meet daily physical activity guidelines
6.Photographs of people with dogs were considered happier people than photographs of people without dogs
7.40% of dog owners had an easier time making friends
8.People who have a strong attachment to a pet feel more connected in their human relationships and their communities
9.Staring into your dog’s eyes raises your level of oxytocin, known as the “love hormone”
10.Pet therapy improves the cognitive function of seniors and reduces agitated behaviors in seniors with dementia
The Americans With Disabilities Act has identified dogs as the only animal acceptable to be called a “service animal.” A person partnered with a service dog has full public access rights as granted by federal law.
Click HERE for full ADA requirements and more information on the law.
So now what?
If you do not have a dog, there are some excellent organizations that specialize in training dogs as service animals. While this is not a legal requirement and can be expensive with long wait-lists, it is certainly a viable option an guarantees a well-qualified animal.
Service dogs are trained in the following capacities: allergy detection, autism, diabetes, guide, hearing, mobility assistance, psychiatric and seizure response. Common breeds are Labradors and Golden Retrievers, but there are many others…my personal favorite was my rescue-mutt as pictured above!
Perhaps you already own a dog. How do you know if your dog can be trained to fulfill your service animal needs? Frankly, not every dog can be a service animal.
No matter what we hope, not every dog will be able to serve, and not every dog wearing an identifying vest is actually a service animal. This is an important fact, and one that has been unfortunately overlooked by those who wish to cheat the system or simply believe their dog is trained “well enough.” Potentially debilitating for those who truly need a service animal, simply claiming your dog has a special job (because it makes you smile) can create dangerous situations and unnecessary confrontations.
It takes a unique personality, hard-working demeanor, excellent temperament and desire to do the necessary tasks as well as a solid foundation in obedience training in order to train a service animal.
We can assess your dog’s potential. If s/he meets necessary requirements as indicated above, we can help get you both to the next step!
We offer basic obedience training and will instruct you and your dog on more advanced, service-need based skills.
But before you leave your home to take the world by storm, we strongly recommend you pass the AKC Canine Good Citizen and Community Canine tests. For individuals spending a large amount of time in fast-paced environments, we also suggest the AKC Urban CGC.
Not only do the advanced courses offer recognized certifications, they guarantee that your service animal will always know how to behave properly in any public or private venue. An added bonus is that every moment you spend training your dog is time you spend cultivating the healthy personal bond you need to maintain a long and trustworthy relationship and peace of mind as a team.
If you are interested in our support, please register. Qualifying dogs will be invited to attend a private assessment.
Visit our Calendar or give us a call at 866-800-6556 to see when we will be in your area.