How To Make Your Dog An Emotional Support Animal
If you are looking to take your relationship with your dog to the next level, registering them as an Emotional Support Animal would be an ideal choice.
Before you get excited over the prospect, here is all you need to know to prepare yourself for the journey.
What are Emotional Support Animals?
The use of animals in various therapeutic and emotional support roles are highly encouraged by the medical community.
There are several studies asserting the benefits of animal companionship to help individuals cope up with their disabilities.
Unlike service and therapy dogs, ESAs do not require any specific training to be your companion.
Licensed therapists can recommend them for an individual who could benefit from the animal’s presence to help with their disability.
Hence, the first step is to determine whether you are eligible to get a certification from a therapist.
How to Qualify for an ESA Letter?
The answer to how to make my dog an anxiety service dog is first to get them, recognized as an ESA.
You need to have a written letter from a mental health professional. This letter confirms that your dog is there to provide you with support.
The letter is valid for one year and comes with the contact information as well as the signature of the therapist.
This letter is crucial to get you and your pet the benefits allocated for Emotional Support Animals.
How to Train your ESA
Though your dog does not need any specialized training, it is highly recommended to make sure that he or she has the proper temperament before you obtain the letter.
They should be amiable towards other people. They should also be calm, be able to control excessive, and be obedient.
If you feel that your dog needs some guidance with the behavior, you can seek professional help in training them. It would help if you focused on nurturing a strong bond with your dog.
In case you are adopting a dog, take time to find the right one, who will be the right fit for your lifestyle and mental well being.
Benefits of Registering as ESA
As ESAs are intended to help an individual throughout their life, there are rules in place to protect them against discrimination.
The Fair Housing Act prevents landlords and property owners from refusing reasonable accommodation for disabled people who require an assistance animal.
The second one, the Air Carrier Access Act offers protection for individuals flying with ESAs, enabling them to take the pet along with them.
You can travel with your dog in the cabin, and avoid transporting them in the cargo.
However, keep in mind that they are expected to behave appropriately and not cause any disruption to other passengers.
In both these scenarios, you will have to produce a valid ESA letter from a certified therapist upon request.
Emotional support dogs have a unique ability to help their owners that nothing else can replace.
They can support your healing process as well as empower you. If you have a disability, it might be time to get your dog an ESA letter and take full advantage of the benefits that come along with it.