The FSDS currently trains only two types of dogs: service and facility dogs. We do not train guide dogs, but have included a description below for comparison purposes only. Below is an introduction to the types of dogs that fall under the broader umbrella of “assistance dogs”. We also do not train or certify Emotional Support Animals (ESAs), as these are not recognized as service dogs under ADA Law.
Assistance Dogs for Individuals with Disabilities
This is a broad term that includes various types of working dogs. There are several types of dogs that are included in this category. Among them are:
- Guide Dogs – trained to assist individuals with visual impairments
- Hearing Dogs – trained to assist individuals with hearing impairments
- Service Dogs – trained to assist individuals with disabilities other than visual or hearing. This includes mobility dogs, psychological service dogs, and medical alert dogs for conditions such as seizures and diabetes
Facility Dogs Serve the Community
Facility Dogs are trained to work in a particular facility to provide comfort and support to those in need; an example of this would be dogs trained for a family advocacy center who provide support to abused children during forensic interviews. The FSDS trains three levels of facility dogs:
- Level I facility dogs are trained to work within the confines of a particular facility, such as a family advocacy center.
- Level II facility dogs are trained to assist in crisis response for agencies such as police departments.
- Level III facility dogs are trained to accompany crime victims, particularly abused children, to court.
Facility directors who wish to obtain a trained and certified dog to work at their location may download a copy of our FD Application Packet June 2013 .