A service dog helps a person with a disability achieve independence. The dog reduces that person’s reliance on other people by doing tasks that the person either cannot do for him/herself or needs to ask for another person’s assistance to do. A service dog can give a person with a disability the support and confidence to travel outside the home independently, (re)join the workforce, or even just accomplish the everyday tasks of living. For example, a service dog can be trained to do tasks such as:
- Provide balance support or assist his partner in sitting, standing, or walking
- Alert his partner to important sounds such as the doorbell, alarm, or the partner’s name being called
- Retrieve items, open and close doors and cabinets, operate light switches and automatic door openers
- Wake his partner from a debilitating nightmare
- Recognize and alert his partner to specific signs of anxiety
- Seek help for his partner in emergencies.