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I'm looking into getting a service dog to help me cope with various things such as; PTSD, Autism, Anxiety, Depression, etc. However, I am unsure where to begin and am very overwhelmed with the process. I have a cousin who trains service dogs so I am lucky that I already have a good resource for that. And I will be asking her if she would be okay with helping me pick out the pup, as she would know what to look for. And I wouldn't. As well as guiding me through the first few weeks with it. The breed I've looked into is a golden retriever, as they seem to be best for what I am after. Sorry if this post is a little all over the place, this is my first time asking about something like this. So I'm a little short on words. But yea, with that being said, have a great day!
 

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If I were you, I'd start looking for and interviewing breeders. Preferably ones who have already had litters in the past become service dogs. If able, I'd see about getting on the waitlist for that particular pairing, a similar one, or for close relatives. A few ways to find them are by attending dog events like shows and asking around, asking therapy dog groups, and Facebook groups. Maybe your cousin can point you to some breeders, if the group they're affiliated with have agreements with breeders. A note of caution there, the big and more well-established service dog groups have their own breeding programs. So research any groups like that carefully.

Not to discourage you, but something I see pop up with people who try to train their own service dogs, is that the dog will likely not be ready to perform their tasks reliably for the first 1.5 to 2.5 years, and may cause more stress in the beginning. And the chance it doesn't work out for whatever reasons. So, just some angles to consider. But, I really stress finding the right breeder before the puppy is likely even born.
 
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