Assistance dog

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
An assistance dog pressing a button to open an automatic door.

An assistance dog is a dog trained to aid or assist a person with a disability. Many are trained by a specific organization, while others are trained by their handler (sometimes with the help of a professional trainer).


There are three general "types" in which an assistance dog may be further classified.[1] Most assistance dogs will be trained for only one of these, though "combination" dogs do exist.

Assistance Dog at food court at shopping mall.
Mobility assistance dog helping his handler stand up.
  • Service dogs refers to dogs not specifically trained for visual or hearing impairment, but trained to do other work, such as mobility assistance dogs, seizure alert dogs or other medical alert dogs, and psychiatric service dogs. In the United States, the term "service dog" may be used synonymously with "assistance dog," and is occasionally used for other types of working dogs as well. These dogs can in some instances be dual classified as Therapy Dogs. Also any of the above named dogs "in training" are protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and Americans with Disabilities Amendment Act (ADAA, which expanded some legal protections), even if the handler at the time is not "using" the dog in the capacity for which it is being trained. In most of the rest of the world a distinct separation between service dogs and assistance dogs is observed.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Assistance Dogs International

External links[edit]