Tag Archives: service dogs benefits
All dog-lovers claim that they find comfort and refuge in their pets. It’s no surprise that psychologists and psychiatrists recommend service dogs to their patients. Service dogs, as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Acts, are defined as “any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to provide assistance to an individual with a disability”. Therefore, service dogs handle a wide range of functions. Aside from comforting the depressed, they also help the disabled people perform daily tasks. Service dogs who assist the deaf alert them when there are alarming sounds.
Note that service animals are not pets. Service animals go through intensive training (which starts at a very young age) and have to be licensed and registered before they are considered official service animals. Such documentation is very important because they are not the same as pets. In an establishment where pets aren’t allowed, service dogs are granted the right to enter because of their functions and duties.
Service dogs are trained to be extremely responsive to the needs of their humans. As impossible as it may seem, service dogs trained for people with depression know when their humans are lonely and sad. For example, service dogs are trained to “hug” their humans if they feel a sense of despair and helplessness. If the human has suicidal tendencies, the dog can interrupt the human’s suicidal activity. People with memory loss problems can benefit from a service dog that will remind them to take their medication or to find essential items, such as their keys. Some dogs are even trained to encourage their masters with anti-social tendencies to interact with other people. Service dogs go through a lot of training before they can execute these tasks effortlessly. At least one year is required to train a service dog, including six months of public access training with the handler. Public access training is very important so that the dog can integrate itself in public places without starting a commotion.
Patients diagnosed with psychological disorders say that even the mere presence of their service dog is enough to inspire them to live normally. Of course, not everyone is recommended to get a service dog. But if the patient happens to have a soft spot for dogs, then this option is potentially life-changing. Public establishments allow service dogs inside (since, again, they are not normal pets) but handlers are responsible for any possible damage caused by the dog. To be safe, the handler should bring biobag dog waste bags and dog poop scoop. Living a normal life with a service dog as a constant companion is possible.
 Americans With Disabilities Act. http://www.ada.gov/qasrvc.htm.