Medical / Service Dog Training:
Medical and / or Service dog training involves an extensive training process to ensure the dog meets state and federal requirements to be certified as a service dog. You MUST have a legal medical reason to have a service dog. The ADA defines a service dog as the following, “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…”
1. You must have a letter from your medical doctor with his/her reason and signature certifying why you need a service dog. This will have to be kept for your records as well
2. Your dog will need to go through an assessment to determine if it’s a proper fit to be trained as a service dog, and to determine if your dog is capable of completing the tasks required to assist you.
What commands will my service dog learn?
That question is truly dependent on your medical needs. Each service dog and what they must be taught is unique in regards to what you and your doctor have determined to be necessary.
Some service commands / tasks include (but are not limited to):
- Chores such as picking up clothes / objects
- Opening / Closing doors
- Alerting you of someone knocking, doorbell, alarm, name being called, etc.
- Walking support
- Medical Alerts (Seizures, Heart Attacks, Migraines, Narcolepsy, Diabetic, Etc)
- Stand between owner and stranger for people with social disabilities / protection
- Press a doggy 911 device to alert police of an emergency
- Fetch a bottle of water from fridge
- Emotional Support (PTSD, Suicidal, Psychiatrict)
Cost of Service Dog Training / Time Frame / Schedule:
The cost and time involved of training a service dog can range GREATLY depending on what tasks your dog must complete and at what level of education they are currently at. First and foremost your dog must be obedient and listen to commands given 99% of the time. That process alone usually takes the majority of the dogs first year to year and half. Once maturity is established and basic commands are reliable, then you can graduate to the second step. CGC certification is recommended prior to starting service training but not required. The second step is beginning the tasks required for your dogs service training.
TOTAL COST CAN RANGE ANYWHERE FROM $5,000 – $15,000