Your Cart is Empty

Service dogs for anxiety: Psychiatric service dogs

Black lab puppy with a red service dog vest

Service dogs are an incredibly important part of our society and can dramatically improve the life of their companion. In this article, we will be covering service dogs for anxiety and everything you'll need to know about them. But first, let's cover the basics of service dogs.

Service dog basics

Service dogs are amazing for anyone facing a disability as they act as a source of aid in a time of need. They can help out with many disabilities including physical disabilities such as loss of a limb, loss of sight or hearing, or any other impairing disability. Service dogs can also be used for nonvisible cases like diabetes, depression, PTSD, and anxiety.

Yellow Lab in a blue service dog vest helping a man with a prosthetic leg

Service dogs are not pets and they will most likely not meet the qualifications of a service dog if they have ever been a pet. Most service dogs are trained from their early years by professionals to be service dogs and then matched with an appropriate companion who will benefit from their dog's service. Because of this, some service dog trainers have waiting lists full of qualified individuals.

To obtain a service dog one must have a physical disability or debilitating illness or disorder, be able to care for the dog and be able to partake in training as to command the dog. Along with this, one must obtain a letter from a doctor stating that they could benefit from receiving a service dog.

Because it is a true service dog it will be legal to go anywhere the general public is allowed including grocery stores and any public areas with a proper vest on.

Red Mesh Service Dog Vest



Service dogs for anxiety

If you are suffering from anxiety a service dog may be the right fit to help you throughout your tough times. In particular, you would be looking for a psychiatric service dog, who is trained to assist individuals with mental health conditions. The job of any service dog is to provide aid and prevent the harm of the person they care for, and this is no different for psychiatric service dogs. The main tasks they are taught include:

  • Help to get and swallow medication during an anxiety attack.
  • Find help when they are unable to assist.
  • Provide comfort in the form of leaning on your chest providing the same response as a hug.
  • And distracting the mind by licking the face of the owner during high-stress times.
Australian Shepard in a red mesh service dog vest on a windy day

These Service dogs for anxiety will be able to tell when your mood shift before it even does, they can predict behavioral actions and help prevent rather than correct. This is what makes them so special for anyone dealing with anxiety as they can be the solution before the problem.

To qualify for a psychiatric service dog specialized in anxiety one must be unable to get through their daily lives in some fashion due to anxiety. If one is no debilitated they may be more suited for an emotional support animal.

Emotional support animal  

Golden Retriever providing support to a lady using a walker

An emotional support animal can provide a ton of benefit to anyone suffering from a mental health condition, they are there to comfort and help you calm down. Along with this they are not full-service dogs and lean more towards the pet side of owning a dog. This does not mean they cannot help during a crisis as they can. They are just not as technically trained and may not be as permitted in places that other service dogs are. These will still require a letter from a doctor and are permitted in no pet living conditions.

Wrapping up

Service dogs for anxiety can dramatically help the well being of anyone facing this mental disorder. These amazing creatures can help get you one step closer to being anxiety free. To see if you qualify and could benefit from either a psychiatric service dog or an emotional support animal, talk to your healthcare provider and ask questions! If you support service dogs or know someone who has or could benefit from this article don't be afraid to share it and leave us a comment!

For more blogs check out 

SitStay has been your working dog supply headquarters since 1995. From service dog vests, dog beds, and working dog equipment, to dog treats and dog training supplies. We've got you covered.

service dogs for anxiety

Recommended Articles

The Best Quotes About Dogs To Make You Smile
The Best Quotes About Dogs To Make You Smile

by M M 4 min read 0 Comments

Read More
healthiest dog breeds
The Healthiest Dog Breeds

by Grant Withers - Canine Specialist & Writer 4 min read 0 Comments

Dogs are an amazing part of life and can bring joy to your whole family, but when your little fur ball gets hurt or sick it can be a scary time. In this article I will be looking at the 9 healthiest dog breeds and how they made the list.
Read More
How to Get Rid of Dog Smell
How to Get Rid of Dog Smell

by Claudia Bensimoun - Canine Specialist & Writer 8 min read 0 Comments

Accidents happen. If you're wondering how to get the urine and dog smells out of the carpet and furniture in your home, here are some easy tips!
Read More