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Good breed for psych. service dog?

This is a discussion on Good breed for psych. service dog? within the Working Dogs forums, part of the Dog Shows and Performance category; Originally Posted by Esand I would not consider a puppy of any breed as being a help for anxiety. They're a handful. I would recommend ...

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Old 03-31-2015, 10:57 AM
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I would not consider a puppy of any breed as being a help for anxiety. They're a handful. I would recommend purchasing an 18-36 month old dog that has been trained for service work
The best thing for my anxiety is having something that takes up ALL of my time so that I don't have a moment to wander mentally to a place that gives me anxiety. Animals have always been a huge help for me, when I direct all my attention to training and raising an animal it does the best for my anxiety, personally.
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Old 03-31-2015, 11:01 AM
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Tracie is correct, some of the breeds on the list I can't have stem to wanting to be as minimally invasive to home owners, store owners, and just people in general when I'm bringing an animal they might not be comfortable with and forcing them to deal with it. I do not like confrontation in public environments, so sticking to a breed that would be recognizable as a service dog would ease my stress. I am not selfish, I don't want to do exclusively what I want, I want to make a decision that would please the most people as possible.
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Old 04-10-2015, 11:59 PM
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If you're determined to get a puppy, I would recommend a lab, a golden retriever or a german shepherd from health-guaranteed, certified and papered lines with some assurances from the breeder that if something goes wrong they are willing to take the puppy back. Absolutely make sure these dogs are hip checked, and accept nothing lower than 'good'.

I recommend these breeds because there's a reason they are considered the stereotypical service dogs. They are biddable, trainable, and generally easy to work with. Put the shepherd LAST on your list though. Although they can be wonderful dogs, they have a more threatening reputation, and occasionally suffer the same breed biases that pit bull owners do. Labs and goldens first. But a good breeder is an absolute must, and make sure they know what you want to do with it so they can make sure the pup has the right temperament for it.
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Old 04-18-2015, 02:01 PM
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One of the most popular seeing eye dogs is the golden retriever. Almost like this is what they were originally bred to do because they are so compatible. A golden service dog tours the hospital and you couldn't ask for a better dog. She responds with a tail wag when someone perks up when touching her.
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Old 04-25-2015, 04:40 PM
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Labradors, retrievers or what about labrododdles. Think seeing eye/ guide dogs. These are proven breeds.
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Old 04-25-2015, 06:00 PM
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Would you consider going to a shelter or rescue group? There are plenty of wonderful mixed and pure breed dogs. You could bring a behaviorist with you to help evaluate the dogs. You could get a better idea of personality with a bit older dog. Also there are plenty of breed specific rescues.. good luck in your search and training.
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Old 04-25-2015, 09:08 PM
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Have you considered a smaller breed, like a Havenese? Great personalities and very trainable. They do very well in hot climates also.
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Old 04-25-2015, 10:34 PM
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Labradors, retrievers or what about labrododdles. Think seeing eye/ guide dogs. These are proven breeds.
Labradoodles were first bred for this but were a complete failure as service dogs. The person who created the breed totally and completely regrets it.
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Old 04-26-2015, 07:39 PM
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Additionally, I would recommend the standard Poodle. Contrary to their image portrayed by the media they are a large, sturdy breed that was bred as a sporting breed for retrieving game from the water, so they love to swim. Highly trainable and one of the smartest breeds that are also good because their hair does not affect people with allergies.
I agree with this 100%.

If you're looking for a hypo-allergenic service dog, PLEASE consider a standard poodle over a "labradoodle". I cannot tell you the temperament of a "labradoodle", what they look like, what type of coat they have, or really anything because...they are not a breed and they have no breed standard. I can think of 0 advantage of choosing a "labradoodle" over a labrador retriever, golden retriever or standard poodle as a service dog.
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Old 05-04-2015, 03:57 AM
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Poodle, Schnauzer, Schäferhund, Grand berger blanc suisse, labrador and Golden Retriever can all be good service dogs.
However all of these dogs can have problems with the hips an the temperament so carefully chose one from a breeder breeding close to the standard, health and a steady temperament.
it is always the right thing to contact one of the big breeder clubs and/or visit a few breed shows/performance events to speak with owners of the breeds you're interested in.
parallely I'd also contact someone who's specialised on chosing/training dogs for needs like yours, and ask for their help when chosing the puppy and perhaps give you some guidelines for training.
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Last edited by mathilda; 05-04-2015 at 03:59 AM.
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