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Q: Where to find psychiatric service dog?

March 8, 2009 | By Jessica P. | 5 answers | Expired: 2011 days ago

Jessica P.

I was researching different types of service dogs, in hopes finding one for my mother who has severe RA and also bipolar disorder. I found that "psychiatric service dog" are gaining popularity in training. Does anyone know where we could apply to get one? My mother has a standard poodle in mind..but any big, "non-shedding" dog would work. Thanks
PS
She lives in New Hampshire...so some place in New England (or in Virginia where I will be moving)
More Info:
Yes she is capable of taking care of a dog, she has been caring for my dog (which I will be taking back in June) she is not able to take care of a puppy or extremely active/untrained dog (not enough physical stamia and strength). She has anxiety in public places, which is why research psychological service dog is of interest...and also pulling (incase of needed wheelchair use in future) and picking up dropped items (due to neuropathy)

Readers' Answers (5)
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Lisa A.
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Mar 08, 2009

I have bipolar, which is treated really well by my medication, but I know my two dogs are at least partially responsible for my mental health! I would recommend getting an older dog, maybe 5 years or so. It is absolutely not true that you can't teach old dogs new tricks! I adopted my dogs when there were around 12 or 13 years old and they learn just fine. They are also already very obedient and, while they like to play, they aren't too rough. I hope your mom loves her new dog. Good for you for doing this for her! Oh, I just had a thought. My sister adopted a 2 year old dog who had "failed out" of seeing-eye-dog school. He was wonderful and could do almost anything but he was a little goofy.

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k c.
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Mar 08, 2009

Department of Psychology at Tufts University
The Psychology Building
490 Boston Avenue
Medford, MA 02155
Tel: (617) 627-3523
Fax: (617) 627-3181

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Ronda R.
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Mar 08, 2009

If you don't need a dog that will be of use in fetching items, turning on and off lights, etc, then any dog will do as a psychiatric helping dog. Well, any dog that is calm, sensitive, and never agressive. Our mental health center psychiatrist often wrote letters designating our patient's pets as a "psychiatric necessity". It doesn't take special training for this.

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Suzanne P.
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Mar 08, 2009

Something else to consider would be her ability to care for the dog, so it would probably be a good idea to get an adult, submissive dog that would not chew on anything. Maybe the humane society or even a psychiatrist's office would have more information. If you have a dog training agency near you, that might be a good place to start as well.

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Linda L.
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Mar 08, 2009

I just watched the video "Freedom Dogs Help Marines Combat PTSD." There may be a clue in that story that would help you.

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