A New Leash on Life With a Service Dog

Service dogs can bring immense joy and independence to those with disabilities. But before you choose your new furry friend, there are a few things to consider. What breed would best suit your needs, how do you care for these dogs, and what are the benefits of a service dog? Cool 4 All wants to help you find the answers and other valuable information below.

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Choosing a Breed

First, consider the type of disability you have and how a dog can help mitigate those. Do you need help with balance or picking up things? Do you have allergies? You’ll also want to take into account your living situation. A large-breed dog may not be the best fit if your residence is a small apartment. 

K9 Of Mine notes that golden retrievers and Labrador retrievers are gentle and intelligent breeds that make great service dogs and are wonderful companions. They’re versatile and can be trained to perform various tasks. Doodles and poodles are another popular choice because they’re highly intelligent and easily trainable. They’re hypoallergenic, which is essential for those with allergies. 

Caring for Your Service Dog

Service dogs are trained to assist people with disabilities. They perform various tasks, such as opening doors, picking up dropped items, and providing balance and support. Caring for a service dog is a big responsibility but can also be very rewarding. Here are some tips on how to care for your service dog.

  • Checkups. Ensure your dog has regular veterinary checkups and is up-to-date on all vaccinations. 
  • Grooming. Service dogs must be well-groomed, so you’ll need to brush them regularly and keep their nails trimmed. You may also want to visit a professional groomer from time to time.
  • Exercise. Whole Dog Journal points out that service dogs need plenty of exercise, so take them on walks or runs daily. 

When you bring your service dog home, there will be a period of adjustment. Besides all the regular supplies a dog owner needs, your trainer may have some additional recommendations. Focus on bonding with your pet and minimizing your stress when your dog arrives at your home. Dogs are susceptible to their owners’ stress levels, and excessive stress could cause behavioural issues in your dog. This could result in behaviour like accidents, frequent scratching, aggression or lack of eating or drinking. Keep everyone calm by doing what you can. By following these simple tips, you and your service dog can adjust to your new life together with ease.

Providing a Safe Environment for Your Dog

If your property doesn’t already have a fence, it’s wise to install one to keep your service dog safe. Not only will you be giving your dog the opportunity to roam your backyard freely, but you’ll also have peace of mind when your pet is out of sight.

Fencing installation costs will vary depending on the materials used and the size of the fence, so it’s essential to get an estimate beforehand. When choosing a fence company, read reviews online and get quotes from multiple companies. Be sure to ask the contractor if they’re licensed, insured, and aware of underground utility lines. These are essential in ensuring a safe and successful installation.

Your Furry Assistant

Service dogs are essential to many people’s lives, and knowing how to care for them is vital. Make sure you do your research before getting a service dog, and be prepared to provide a safe and loving home for your new furry assistant. This should include a stress-free living space, possibly a fenced yard and regular care and exercise.

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