Can I train my puppy to be a service dog?
Could I train my puppy to be a service dog?
I have anxiety and get panic attacks, the comfort of an animal calms me down.
She was just born so I'd thought I'd ask before she gets older.
- 5 years agoFavorite Answer
"...defined by the ADA as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a person who has a history or record of such an impairment, or a person who is perceived by others as having such an impairment. The ADA does not specifically name all of the impairments that are covered."
ADA definition of a service dog is at http://www.ada.gov/service_animals_2010.htm
"Service animals are defined as dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities. Examples of such work or tasks include guiding people who are blind, alerting people who are deaf, pulling a wheelchair, alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure, reminding a person with mental illness to take prescribed medications, calming a person with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) during an anxiety attack, or performing other duties. Service animals are working animals, not pets. The work or task a dog has been trained to provide must be directly related to the person’s disability. Dogs whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the ADA."
Service dogs do not not need to be professionally trained or to come from a special service dog training program. They can be home trained IF the owner knows what to do. It will be harder and take longer then you think it will. But there is no test, no certification, no legal standards required for your dog except the loose ADA requirements.
None of the self appointed "experts" here are qualified to say you are or are not disabled or whether you do or do not qualify for a service dog. You need to consult with your doctor and disability counselors, not some anonymous yahoos who don't know you or what they are talking about.
Some people here seem to think that they are the only people who should have service dogs, some simply lie for the sake of lying. This is not the place for a serious answer.
- AlexaLv 65 years ago
You can train her to be a therapy pet where she snuggles up to you on command and notices when you are nervous so she can soothe you but she won't be a service dog. Service dogs and specially bred and trained for their tasks and are just for disabled people or people with an illness like epilepsy or something.
So you could train her to assist you but she would have none of the rights or paperwork of a service dog and you would not be allowed to take her anywhere that regular dog cannot go.
- 4 years ago
Find what motivates your dog. Some dogs do anything for food. Some dogs do anything for Toys. Some do anything for a good petting. Some do anything for only one type of food, like cheese, or hotdog. Some only have interest in training for 5 minutes at a time, and others can go for an hour. Figure out what your dog is willing to work for, and then work with her in sessions that are no longer than she can tolerate. How to train your dog properly https://tr.im/epOKw
Sign up for a dog obedience training class. It will not train your dog. It will give you training on how you can train your dog. Most people understand the idea of training, but there is a right and a wrong way to do it, and there is good and bad technique. Timing and consistency is very important, and it helps to have feedback of someone watching you who can help you improve your technique to get more efficient results with your dog.
However, she may be somewhat anxious around other dogs, sort of like the shy kid on the playground. She will benefit from continuing what you are doing as far as asking her to sit before entering, but there are more things along those lines that will help her to calmly go in and out of the dog park. She may also benefit from going in short bursts, or only when fewer dogs are present, or avoiding times when other dogs that make her nervous are present. Maybe she just plays loud - my brother's dog is this way - or maybe she is a dogpark bully - sorry it is possible. But more likely she is just a little anxious around new dogs and she wants to play but just doesn't quite know how to do that and still feel comfortable. Don't be surprised if your dog does not actually like the dog park, and maybe she would get more enjoyment and less stress out of simply going for a good walk somewhere else.
A wagging tail does not mean that your dog is happy or even comfortable with the situation. It means your dog is emotionally aroused. This could be a happy arousal, or it could be a nervous arousal, or it could be an aggressive arousal. Go youtube it, there are plenty of videos of 'vicious' dogs who are throwing a very aggressive fit of barking and snarling while their tail is wagging vigorously. Even police dogs who are not let off the leash to chase down a suspect can be lunging and barking and snarling, and their tails are still going.
- Verulam 1Lv 75 years ago
As my comment - I tend to regard all this 'service dog' with suspicion unless it's a dog trained to assist with specific disabilities, eg a Guide Dog. The puppy you keep will of course, be a companion and will be a mental support for you but 'service dog' - no. This isn't what you'd have and as such, as pointed out, your dog won't be allowed into places that dogs are not allowed into. With respect, I'd be looking to my GP for the support I need rather than to my dog?
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- LorraineLv 75 years ago
You won't have a 'service dog' and it won't be able to go to places that only service dogs can.
What is a service dog..
"Service animals are defined as dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities."
"This revised definition excludes all comfort animals, which are pets that owners keep with them solely for emotional reasons that do not ameliorate their symptoms of a recognized "disability"; animals that do ameliorate the conditions of a medical disability"
I think we get a little tired of people wishing to find a loophole with these dogs to enable them to live in apartments where dogs are not allowed and to be taken into places where dogs are not allowed.
You carry on and train your puppy and I do hope she gives you a lot of comfort but you won't have a 'service dog'Source(s): Wikipedia.
- OcimomLv 75 years ago
No your puppy is not a service dog. Treat her as a loved pet but you can't be taking her in places where legit service dogs for disabled people can go.
- Star_of_DarknessLv 75 years ago
You are not disabled at all so you can't lie and claim your mutt is a service dog. Anxiety is not a disability according to the FDA so you can't have a service dog
The dog will only cause you more stress and since it just make you feel good and you are not disabled its just an ESA which means it can' t be in public places, in pet free rental or in stores
- Nekkid Truth!Lv 75 years ago
Anxiety and panic attacks are NOT disabilities under ADA guidelines
"Comfort" isn't a service dog task either.
No, your puppy cannot be a service dog
- MacBryanLv 75 years ago
I find it pathetic the number of people who come on to this site and expect a dog to cure all their problems, instead of working hard with their doctor and or therapist to deal with the problem. Anxiety and panic disorders can be massively improved with CBT and other therapies, with or without medication, but practitioners only see results with motivated patients, not professional victims who expect a doggy to make everything right.
- 5 years ago
if you know how then of course, but basically you do not need a full blown service dog, you need a dog to cater to your exact need. In order to do that, you will need the basic commands and maybe a few extra. She will need to learn come, stay, sit and pick something catered to your needs like maybe "cuddle", then teach her it means to basically come to you and lay on/hug you