Millions of people have dogs as pets, but for some dogs can be an extension of themself. If you have a disability or care for someone with a disability, Becky’s Animal Rescue Blog shares what you need to know about service dogs and how they can improve your quality of life.

Reasons to Get a Service Dog

All dogs are great for providing companionship. Service dogs take that one step further with special training that enables them to aid people with disabilities. You may need a service dog if you have intense anxiety or have a debilitating medical condition such as epilepsy. Service dogs can also aid with mobility and help you live a more independent life.


Characteristics of a high quality service dog.

It’s important to remember that not every canine is suited to be a service dog. Certain breeds make better service dogs than others, but ultimately, it comes down to an individual dog’s temperament. A service dog must have the following characteristics:

  • Focus
  • Energy
  • Gentleness
  • Eagerness to please

Breeds that are historically aggressive rarely make good service dogs. They can be great for protection, but they are not usually good for calming anxiety or gently aiding mobility. Gentle, friendly breeds such as golden retrievers, Labrador retrievers, and poodles often make the best service dogs. If you are looking for a service dog for your family, you may want to start by looking at these breeds

Steps for Adjusting to Life With a Service Dog

It takes time to adjust to having a service dog in your home. It’ll take a few weeks for you to start bonding with your new pet. Focus on spending plenty of quality time with your canine companion while you develop a bond. You should also take measures to minimize stress because all dogs are highly sensitive to stress. The adjustment period will take much longer if you or our new dog is stressed out, so make sure you practice self-care.


Tips for Caring for a Service Dog

Caring for service dogs is similar to caring for canines that do not have the same training. All dogs need affection, food, water, and exercise to thrive. If you can provide these four things, you are ready to be a responsible dog owner.

However, having a fence is crucial for service dogs. Not only do you want your furry companion to stay safe while hanging out in your backyard, but you may not be able to chase down your pet if it escapes. A fence is the best option for both of you. If you don’t have a fence and are preparing to bring home a service dog, you may want to talk with local fencing contractors to get quotes.

The quote should include the cost of fencing materials in addition to labor. The size of the fence will also affect the final cost. Rather than opting for the most cost-efficient quote, make sure you look at online reviews to make an educated choice on which fencing contractor to hire. Only use licensed and insured professionals, and make sure you make them aware of any potential hazards such as underground utility lines.

Service dogs are invaluable assets for people with disabilities. Canines can drastically improve your quality of life in many ways, and getting a service dog is a great way to be happier and more independent regardless of your disability.


Authored by Linda Chase

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