There are many different types of service dogs to assist those with special needs. These dogs receive specialty training to provide the very best service possible for their people. The following guide will discuss some of the different types of service dogs and how they help people with disabilities.
Dogs that Assist the Deaf or Hearing Impaired
A signal or hearing dog acts as a deaf or hearing impaired person’s ears. They will alert the disabled person to different sounds such as someone talking to them, buzzers, emergency signals, the doorbell and telephone. These dogs play and extremely important role in the day to day lives of their people. There are several different signals they can use in order to get their handlers attention, such as paw touches or nose bumps. The dog is trained to take their person to the cause of the sound or to a safe location. There are many hearing dogs that will wear special equipment so that they are recognized as a special needs dog. A martingale collar is one way to provide this recognition.
Dogs that assist those who need Mobility Assistance
These dogs are trained to help those with physical disabilities. They can perform tasks such as pulling a wheelchair, walking in an assistance harness and providing support much like a cane or walker would. Additionally, these dogs are trained to help with the following tasks:
- Pick up items that are dropped
- Help dress and undress the person
- Bring telephones and medication when it is needed
- Help person rise if the fall over
- Help the person rise in and out of their wheelchair
This obviously means that the service dog that is used must be big enough to accommodate the weight of the person they are helping.
Service Dogs with Children
There are many service dogs that are also used for children with disabilities. This not only provides the child a companion, it can also perform all the tasks that are listed above, depending on the child’s needs. Service dogs given to children are also said to offer psychiatric benefits such as a happier disposition, better attitude, and in many cases signs of improvement in their medical condition.
Using a service dog is a great way for a disabled person or child to still have a normal independent life. Instead of having to rely on other people they have a constant companion to help them complete everyday tasks. These dogs are typically certain breeds and go through extensive training to provide the services that disabled people require. They are unbelievably smart and able to perform any task on command. These dogs are essential for people to feel as though they can make it alone and feel comfortable doing so.