Choosing a suitable puppy/dog to train as an Assistance Dog is a vital first step in this journey.
The temperament of the breed and the tasks the Assistance Dog will be trained to perform are important considerations when choosing a potential Assistance Dog.
Labradors and Golden Retrievers are the most common breeds trained as Guide and Hearing Assistance Dogs.
Restricted or dangerous dogs shouldn’t be considered as an Assistance Dog.
It is strongly recommended that Assistance Dogs are vaccinated and desexed.
Whether you buy or adopt, a useful first step in choosing a suitable puppy or dog is to consider the temperament of your potential ADiT.
Irrespective of the tasks you will want to teach your ADiT, ideally your puppy has a calm, even temperament showing that it wants to learn, is
affectionate and doesn’t display excessive reactivity to unexpected circumstances.
If your puppy shows a calm, even temperament then the next consideration relates to the type of tasks you will want your ADiT to learn and perform for you.
All pet owners have a responsibility to provide lifelong care for their pet which includes :
All ADiTs and ADs (and pets) should be microchipped.
In addition to the responsibility of regular pet ownership Assistance Dog or Assistance Dog in Training owners/handlers have the added responsibility of :
A handler must have the capacity to care for the physical, emotional, social and financial needs of an AD/ADiT. They may sometimes need to draw on the assistance of friends or family members for help to adequately care for their AD/ADiT in times of stress.