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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have been interested to qualify Snoops as a Therapy/Service Animal for quite some time now. I'm curious how I would go about doing this? Do they need certain qualifications before they can even be considered?

To be completely candid.... a few years ago, I had cancer. Thankfully, I've beaten it (fingers crossed) and I've been cancer free for awhile now. Since that time, I've had several other ailments including alopecia, chronic pain, a recent scare with melanoma, etc... I've also had some pretty heavy emotions - call it "psychological issues" if you want. All of this has been manageable and my life is pretty normal and good. With the addition of Snoops tho, life got better. I find him to be extremely soothing and comforting and a great help to my overall stability. He keeps me in great spirits! And with this positive reinforcement comes the ability to continue healing. I definitely consider him to be a therapy/service dog to me and my needs.

Do I need to have him officially registered somewhere? Or can I just tell people he is a service animal? How does all of this work? I take him with me to as many public places that allow me. I would like to have the freedom to have him with me at all times. I hate being nervous about whether or not we will get kicked out of a store...
I took him to the mall once, and security asked me if he was a service animal. I said "yes" and security left me alone.. for a minute. I rounded the corner and I was surrounded by a team of security ready to escort me out! They were riding around on their stupid little upright scooter things, communicating on their walky-talkies. It was pretty ridiculous. I know that it is illegal for them to question my need for a service animal, or any disabilities. I guess it was a slow day at the mall for them.... :mad::mmph:

Thanks for any advice!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
This is what I've come up with so far....

a dog does not need to receive official training or certification to become a "service animal". They must be able to exemplify certain skills that are helpful to the person who requires the service animal.

I also found this:

http://www.ada.gov/qasrvc.htm
 

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they can question you about a sevice animals, but they cannot ask you why you need one.

You absolutely CANNOT tell people he is a service animal unless he is. This is a big part of the reason there has reccently been a fair amount of reistance to service animals. People are going through these do it yourself type deals and/or claiming their animals are working when they are not. Even puppy raisers cannot demand entrance into a facilty with a dog in training if the owner refuses because THEY are not disabled. The laws aren't there for the dogs, they are there for a the peole who need them.

Yes you are supposed to go through training with a service animal. I personaly have never heard of any of these registries where you can just go online and register your dog as a service dog. The laws are in place to protect people who really cannot get along without there service animals. Ie people who have alert dogs, seeing eye dogs, CCI dogs. I am aware that you can train your own service animal, I have worked with several individuals who have done so or were in the process of doing so, however they are required to pass a test. Honestly I was kind of against the idea of the do it yourself service training at the time, (not so much now) so I didn't inquire any further into the process. Most of the what I considered at the time "real" service dogs that I've worked with have all been CCI dogs. They are bred, raised, and trained via the orgainization and then matched to the people they can best serve, even if it is just with companionship. I want to say that the do it yourselfers were testing their dogs in tallahassee, so they must be part of a group who certifies them. Check around your local area and see if you can find such a group.

For therapy dog cert. check out the Delta pets or T.D.I (Therapy dogs international). You will be required to pass two tests, the CGC and then the therapy dog test in order to certifiy. Neither a therapy dog or it's handler have any rights as far as taking their dogs into public places or even medical facilities. You have to have permission for everything you do or be invited. :)
 

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Yeah I just googled it and came up with that site,
I thought it may had some info. on it that was useful. I agree with Wonder though, if you're dog is not registered as a service dog don't claim for him/her to be because it could land you in a deal of trouble.

But good luck getting your dog registered,
especially if he/she does help you. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Thanks again - the whole reason why I'm inquiring here is because I would like to follow the legitimate route to having Snoops registered as a service animal. I do realize that there are many people out there who abuse and take advantage of this.

Snoops does help me, but I would like to do it the "right" way :)
I think people need to realize tho, that a person does not necessarily need to exhibit a physical disability or ailment on the outside such as blindness, inability to walk, etc to require a service animal or find that their pet assists them in a "service" sense
 

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Thanks again - the whole reason why I'm inquiring here is because I would like to follow the legitimate route to having Snoops registered as a service animal. I do realize that there are many people out there who abuse and take advantage of this.

Snoops does help me, but I would like to do it the "right" way :)
I think people need to realize tho, that a person does not necessarily need to exhibit a physical disability or ailment on the outside such as blindness, inability to walk, etc to require a service animal.

That's the spirit! :D
 

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Help me out...(sry I didn't go to any of the sites) But what is the good citizen award? I am about to start training with Chase just puppy classes but I'm going to proceed to get the good citizen if he's the right temperment for it. Is this all I need to be able to get in a hospital if they wanted a therapy dog? (if he is not the right type of temperment for this then we'll do something else I personally don't know at this point...I'm sort of waiting it out) Jen
 

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Cuddleparty,
So sorry to hear about all the health problems I hope you are feeling tons better. Dogs are great for people that have health problems. We talked my mother into getting a dog 4 years ago because of health problems and it helped her out a lot! Dogs are good therapy even if they are not certified. Hang in there! Jen
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks Jenspoo! I agree that dogs (pets of all sorts) make such a difference in everyone's lives! Even my Mom who has typically been a "hater" of pets has really taken to Snoops. She just finished her battle with breast cancer and our entire family notices how Snoops really lifts her spirits. She even commented the other month that she now has "7 grandkids" (6 human and 1 Snoops).

It's so important to keep in a good mood and have a positive outlook - stress is a #1 killer and can really contribute to further deterioration in already ailing people....

Goodluck with Chase becoming a "good citizen" or whatever path you pursue with him :)
 

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One of my grooming clients got a prescription from his doctor to have his dog around always, to keep his blood pressure from getting too high...perhaps you can investigate this avenue...
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I was at the doctor yesterday for a check up and thought about asking her about this...
Hmmm... :thinking: Perhaps I will ask in two weeks when I go for another follow-up.
Thanks for the FYI !!!
 

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My dog Paris is certified through Delta as a therapy dog, and passed her test at 1 year and 4 days old. There is no requirement to have a CGC test, but the test for Delta is similar, plus a few other things. When you certify you take a test yourself, plus the dog takes one. Contact the Delta Society about their Pet Partner program. Do remember one thing, If you go through T.D.I and visit under any other name, like "your hospital volunteer program" then the TDI liability insurance doesn't cover you. If you go through the Delta program their liability insurance covers you in any official visit.

Paris is also a "service animal" for me, being self trained. I have an Rx from the Dr to have a service animal for medical reasons. I carry this with me where I go and noone questions us. Paris identifies and directs me to a calm area when i'm in a stressful situation.

There is a wealth of information on this webpage.
http://www.psychdog.org/faq.html

This is the format my Dr used to write the note.

What should my doctor’s generic letter of support say?

On physician’s letterhead:

"[Name] is my patient. I am treating him/her for a chronic medical disability. [Name] uses a Service Dog to assist him/her in managing this disability, and I support him/her in doing so. It is my professional opinion that [Name]'s Service Dog is medically necessary. Please accommodate him/her and his/her Service Dog, as requested.

Sincerely, [doctor's name]"


If you read every word on that website you will be an expert!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
ChickyChat & Paris.... Thank you so much for all of this information! Very helpful indeed! :hug: wow....

I will be sure to go thru it all, and I will probably speak with my doctor on my next follow-up. Or, I will be meeting my oncologist on Tuesday so perhaps I will speak with him about it also.

Cheers for that! Glad to hear that you have Paris to help you out :) What a great friend!
 
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