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Dogs are an integral part of human lives. They are cared for as pets because of their many health benefits, such as lowering stress and improving their owner’s happiness. Dogs can also be used as service animals. They are smart and can follow commands with adequate training. 

If you want to certify your dog as a service animal, this guide will provide you with the information you must have for this process. 

What is a service dog used for?

A service dog plays a vital role in assisting people with disabilities. These animals are trained to help with day-to-day tasks for people with epilepsy, autism, diabetes, PTSD, and more. 

The type of training that a service dog undergoes depends on the disability of the person they are assisting. These dogs are granted public access rights. Therefore, they can go anywhere their owner needs to be, which include places where other animals or dogs aren’t allowed. 

How much do service dogs cost?

Budget is a primary consideration when you need a service dog. The cost of a service dog ranges from $15,000 to $30,000, although this could vary depending on where you live. 

The several hours that trainers put into training the dogs are the primary reason why getting a service dog isn’t cheap. The more specialized the training that dogs have, the more expensive they are. 

Another option is to train your dog. This might be a cheaper route if you cannot afford to buy a service dog. There are service dog certification programs that charge you on an hourly basis. Depending on the type of tasks you need from your service dog, it may take a year or two to complete the training. 

How are service dogs trained?

The specific types of training that a service dog undergoes depend on your disability and the specific tasks you need help with. In addition to training dogs for these skilled tasks, they must also be trained with the behaviors required for being in public areas. This training will ensure that your dog behaves appropriately in a public place to avoid being removed from that space. 

Therefore, service dog training consists of two facets: public access behavior and disability-related tasks. 

types of training that a service dog undergoes

Can a dog with a bite history be a service dog? 

Dogs tend to bite when in stressful situations. Therefore, dogs with a bite history are generally not recommended for training as service dogs because of their inability to learn appropriate ways of responding to high-stress situations. 

Therefore, it is crucial to choose the best dog service certification programs to ensure that you can get quality training for your dog to prevent it biting and attacking others. 

Do you need certification for a service dog?

No, the American Disabilities Act and other related laws do not require that a service dog be certified. There are also no special requirements on how to train a dog. However, dogs that receive training from reputable certification and dog training programs give you more confidence that they will behave appropriately in public and that they can perform disability-related tasks. 

Make sure to keep a record of your dog training and certification, just in case you need it as proof later on. In other countries like Canada or the UK, dog training certification from a licensed dog trainer is required for service dogs to gain public access.