Golden Retrievers are the most common and well-known dog strains to work as a service dog. They can assist people who have visual and hearing impairment and can help out to do a particular task. But, what characteristics make Golden Retrievers a service dog.
However, choosing the right dog breed is a very crucial part of pairing an individual with a medical condition to an assistance dog or service dog for any purpose. Meanwhile, in many instances, Golden Retrievers suits best in this kind of service.
To be able to help you to determine whether a Golden Retriever might be a good match for you, well, some basic information about the breed is written here. And, if you are still wondering about it, here we will give you all the information that you look for about Goldies.
Common Service Dog Breeds
Commonly, when we say service dog, two of the most usually used strains are Golden Retrievers and Labrador Retrievers. General information about service dogs that you need to know is:
- Service dogs come in various sizes. They range from very large to very small breeds depending upon the needs of an individual with a medical condition
- A requisite is that the dog must do the tasks given to support and ease an individual’s disability in a comfortable manner
- An example is a Papillon dog type that is not suitably good in drawing a wheelchair, however, the dog suits best as a dog for assisting hearing and supporting emotionally
- A current habit today are recovering dogs from shelters and used as service dogs
Further, there are lots of medical conditions that have requisites that really varies. There is also various legislation that covers and define these disabilities. Dog types that may suit one task, may not be applicable to other jobs.
QUALIFICATIONS OF A SERVICE DOG
All service dogs need to have a special set of qualities regardless of their breed. However, not all dogs are qualified to be service dogs. There are given set qualities that can qualify your Golden Retriever as a service dog. The reason for this is to make a service dog be reliable in their work. These are:
- Placid but sociable
- Being attentive
- Can be touched by many, even strangers
- Has the eagerness to please
- It has the habit to accompany you around
- Mingle to various situations and places
- Able to learn fast and retain details
Is Golden Retriever Qualified to be a Service Dog
It is difficult for a dog to be a service dog and as mentioned, not all dogs can be service dogs. But, the main concern here is if Golden Retrievers qualified to be a service dog?
Certainly, YES! Well, if there are characteristics that qualify a dog to be a service dog, then, Golden Retrievers have traits that fit it.
Let’s take a look at certain characteristics of Golden Retrievers that make him qualified to be a service dog:
- Very trainable
- Very sensible to an individual’s feeling
- A little training is enough to perform a task
Type of Service Dog where Golden Retrievers are Best Suited
Because of their sensitivity to people, Golden Retrievers best suites as guide dogs and mobility assistance or mobility service dogs.
This is the type of service dogs usually provide support to the blind or individual with visual impairment to explore the environment.
Mobility Assistance Dogs or Mobility Service Dogs
Mobility assistance dog or mobility service dog is a wide category. First, these dogs support people with disabilities safely go wherever they want. Various types of service dog do a lot of the tasks the same with a mobility assistance dogs can do, and many mobility assistance dogs tasks are equal with some of the things that others perform.
A mobility assistance dog is a service dog undergoes training to provide assistance with a physically disabled individual with mobility concerns, which may include those who are very dependent on their wheelchairs. Mobility assistance dogs are the next in line as the very well-known strains of a service animal in public. This is because these animals in service wear safety gears that allow them to be recognized easily. But, despite the old school thinking, assistance dogs are not given official uniforms and should not be recognized in any way.
These service dogs may be paired with individuals who cannot walk. They are paired with those individuals very dependent on wheel-chairs. This type of service dog is also coupled to those individuals with artificial limbs; or who have a different type of conditions interrupting with locomotion. That’s the reason these dogs are recognizable, compare to those that display invisible or less noticeable disabilities. Examples are service dogs supporting people with a compromised mental state. Also in the list are dogs for signalling diabetic people and even allergen detection service dogs.
Assistance dogs may be from all breeds or even from all sizes. However, due to the physical demands employ on this type of service animal, mobility assistance dogs are mostly come from medium or large sizes, especially strong breeds.
Mobility Assistance Dog Tasks
Like any other kind of assistance dog, mobility dogs have the proper training to do all sorts of helpful things to provide an easy and better life to their partner individual. They also support people in improving independence and their way of living. All assistance dogs have a task to mitigate the difficulties of a person with a disability in specific, task-oriented ways for which they undergo proper training. This is the reason that their classification is as working dogs and as not pets.
They teach these mobility assistance dogs to do the particular tasks in which their human partner will rely on them for. Through this, mobility assistance dogs perform the following list of common jobs. The typical mobility assistance dog tasks include:
- Aid to keep an individual with posture, stamina, and other coordinating concerns
- Supporting their partner get into and out of a wheelchair or vehicle
- Drawing a wheelchair
- Keeping away from threats in the surrounding
- Shutting doors, drawers and cabinets
- Pushing buttons of automatic doors or elevators
- Switching lights
- Getting items or other things on the floor
- Having back items
- Carrying things in a canine bag
- Assisting in making dressed
- Offering support of emotions, companions, and relaxation
How Are Mobility Assistance Dogs Trained
The training for a mobility assistance dog is not a “one-dog fits all” concept. Good training for these kinds of dogs is to determine the specific needs of an individual and match it to the ability of a particular dog. Here are tips in training a mobility service dog.
- Choose the mobility service dog depending on its natural abilities and inherent characteristics. Select those that is placid and resilient to disturbance. The options you’ll have to choose is very particular to your medical conditions and the dog’s capacity to do so.
- Begin the training in their puppy stage, as early as fifty-six days old. However, better to wait to prepare them for stability work until they finish growing.
- Educate the dog to develop complete assistance and also compliance. As the last step, instruct them how to mingle with you and how to perform particular duties parallel to your needs.
After the process, your dog will acquire training specifically for you. Your partner will improve skills eliminating or mitigating your disability. The profound, meticulous and precise background of their job needs manner and training principles. It is very important for mobility service dogs to do work well even in confronting and disturbing environments. Their success relates to a person’s health and well being.
Aside from that, many mobility service dogs perform physical tasks that require careful concentration to details. This also involves knowing about behavioral changes in their human partners. Moreover, solve problems on their own are also their task. They perform in stressful situations where their handler may fully rely upon them. These service dogs have the proper training to answer your needs right away. They have the ability to do several works on their own whether in their house, outside or other places that are not familiar.
Moreover, your supportive canine is there to support your disability, it’s also imperative you give your dog support and love like any other. They also need care which will maximize their comfort and safety, helping you in the end. The dog’s training is more dependent on you as their owner, so, you should be trustworthy and precise. Thus, you can also provide various sources into each challenge so that you can create a dog that is not easily distracted by environmental noise.
Training Process to be an Excellent Service Dog Breeds
Being an intelligent breed, the Golden Retriever is capable to cope with new challenges. This is the reason Golden Retriever become a good service dog and one of the absolute service dog type. Service dogs must be easy to educate as they have to devote themselves to a solitary life task.
But, the question is how can you train a Golden Retriever as a service dog? Well, there are several types of disabilities that service dogs cater to.
The tasks that service dogs are responsible include:
- Guide dogs for those with visual impairment
- Hearing dogs for an individual with a hearing impairment
- Therapy dogs
- Assistance dogs that support in switching the lights, shutting doors, and many others
Exposing to various disabilities means that the dog needs to undergo more types of training. One example of this is institutions that educate guide dogs for blind to prepare them to safely guide the masters around. This training is not the same for various medical conditions. Some service dogs that simply get directions from their owners don’t need much training.
Furthermore, most therapy dogs undergo training to fit the disability that the individual partner has. Golden Retrievers are naturally sensitive to people who are hurting. Thus, these dogs just need a little bit of training to learn about things such as wheelchairs or any other equipment they might come across. One area that needs a therapy dog as gentle and friendly as the Golden Retriever is therapy with animal assistance.
Why Golden Retrievers Classified as Excellent Service Dog
Golden Retrievers have lots of behaviors and traits that help them to be a great service dog. More of their characteristics create them to be a good example of a service dog.
Here are pieces of evidence that make the Golden Retriever as a service dog:
Fully grown golden retrievers are large, bulky, and firm. They are generally around 60 to 70 pounds in weight, with about 2 feet high, and quite longer than they are tall. Their coats are either straight, curly, or feathered; the color is light to dark golden-brown; light; and water repellent. Having a water-repellent coat is important for assistance dogs, which may make them work out in rainy weather most likely than pets.
These have a highly bright mind, loyal, able to follow directions, and has the eagerness to please other dogs. Based on history, the three dogs that won the American Kennel Club’s Obedience Championship Title last 1977 were from the breed of golden retrievers. They are physically alert and eager but not reactive. However, they may progress moving and working themselves until they are exhausted. Because of this, it’s crucial to focus on them and implement break times. Their being affectionate and friendly are appreciated and rewarded in return. Also, Golden Retrievers can tolerate and are warm to every kid and other animals, often have strong bonding relationship to the entire members of the family.
Moreover, giving attention and both the physical as well as the mental enhancement are crucial when taking care of a Golden Retriever. Luckily, the everyday life of a service dog typically gives lots of all. But, this breed does not a high-maintenance grooming session. The coat does not tangle most of the time, but better to schedule the brushing in a twice a week basis.
The lifespan of a golden retriever is averaging from 10 up to 12 years. Further, problems in joints like hip dysplasia and even elbow dysplasia, also arthritis are usual in their growing years. Meanwhile, diseases of the heart, eye cataracts, and skin allergies are other health issues that the breed are facing.
All these traits work together to produce an excellent service or assistance dog who will always be present and accompany you everywhere all of the time.