Types of Service Dogs

types of service dogs

Types of Service Dogs

Some people may be shocked to learn there are more types of service dogs than guide dogs for the blind. Service dogs are trained on an individual basis to perform tasks that assist their handlers with disabilities and hence, there are many different types of service dogs, classified by the types of tasks the dogs perform.

The dogs’ trained tasks are dependent on the needs of the animal’s handler’s limitations and abilities.

The most common types of service dogs are:

Guide Dogs or Mobility Dogs

Guide Dogs (also called mobility dogs), are service dogs that are trained to retrieve items, push buttons, or open doors for their handlers. These service dogs might help people with disabilities with balance, transferring from one place to another, or walking, among other tasks.

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Hearing Alert Dogs

A Hearing Alert Dog is a service dog that is trained to alert its hearing-impaired handler to sounds, which he or she cannot hear.

Hearing Alert Dogs can be trained to alert their handlers to sounds such as doorbells, oven alarms, fire alarms, and other sounds that require immediate attention.

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Psychiatric Service Dogs

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PTSD Service Dogs

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Seizure Alert Dogs

Seizure Alert Dogs are sometimes referred to as, ‘Medical Alert Dogs” or “Seizure Response Dogs”. In the event a handler has a seizure, these working canines and are trained to respond to their handler’s state by either retrieving assistance, or remaining by the person’s side until help comes.

Some seizure alert dogs can even alert their handlers to oncoming seizures.

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Sensory Signal Dogs or Social Signal Dogs

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Diabetes Alert Dogs

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Migraine Alert Dogs

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Narcolepsy Alert Dogs

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Autism Service Dogs

Autism Service Dogs can be trained to alert their handlers to particular behaviors, such as repetitive hand-flapping, so that the autistic handler can hopefully respond to the behaviors in a desired fashion.

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