Thinking About Getting a Dog for Emotional Support?
Getting a dog for emotional support or if you already have a dog and are thinking about certifying them as an emotional support dog, there are things to know before you do.
Emotional support dogs are to help you feel safe, have a protective barrier between you and others (many times, strangers or even loved ones will approach you in situations where you just need space, they can act as a barrier to let people know to back off). Getting a dog for emotional support can reduce your medications and help you slowly transition back into “normal life.” If you have had a traumatic experience or persistent emotional instability, dogs are natural stress relievers. Dogs are said to reduce anxiety, stress (cortisol levels), and manic behaviors. Having a trained dog to help you through these things, or even training a dog you already have can change your life for the better.
Emotional support dogs are allowed in public establishments & transportation, restaurants, stores, and even in airports. These animals are protected under federal law by the FHAA and ACAA. These dogs must be identified by wearing a tag or vest letting the public know their purpose; otherwise, you will constantly have to explain why you have them with you.
Emotional support dogs are not just for those with emotional instability; they help individuals with mental conditions, as well. Having a dog for emotional support can change your life for the better and give you the freedom you never had, or help you gain back what normality you did have following a traumatic event.
Traveling with an emotional support dog can be the easiest way to navigate through hard situations without seeking medical attention or using medications. Emotional support dogs are ideal for mental and emotional disorders alike, and you should speak with your psychiatrist to see if this would be a good option for you.