Archive for the ‘Service Dog Tips’ Category

Service Dogs in the Office: How to Make It Work Most employers are in the dark about employees who require the assistance of service dogs and there are questions such as “what if the dog bites?” or “how will those allergic to dog hair react?” to name two of the most commonly asked. There are actually ways to integrate service dogs into a workplace while protecting the legal rights and ensuring the safety of both the employers and the employees.

One of the major concerns that an employer would have to address regarding service dogs in the office is the possibility of allergies. Although only around 10% of people are allergic to dogs, the situation should be mitigated. One airline that has done a study on air exchange and air flow has reported that service dogs aboard aircraft should be in a place that is five rows or more from the passenger who has the allergy.

How Things Can Work with Service Dogs in the Office Employers should be aware that they may be held liable if an animal is allowed in the office and injures employees, customers or just about anybody who happens to be in the workplace like the pizza delivery boy or the CEO of a potential investor. The only solution to this is to ask the owner to get insurance coverage for injuries which may be caused by his/her service dog.

In cases of damage to company property – including computers, carpets, furniture, office equipment, and even files – insurance would be one way of rectifying the situation; indemnification would be another in the form of financial reimbursement if the service dog destroys personal property of another employee that was, rightfully, in the workplace. The service dog’s owner could also cover the damages.

An employer who is okay with service dogs in the office, but leases office space would have to ask permission from the building owner before the canines are allowed inside. If you aren’t too clear on any policy of the building owner regarding the presence of service dogs in the premises, read the lease agreement again. If there is a policy that states animals are not allowed in the building, negotiate or compromise.

Although the jury has yet to decide whether or not an allergy to animals may be classified a disability as per the ADA of 1990, an employer has to ensure that he/she does not commit a violation of the ADA. If you are caught in a dilemma in which one employee requires the service dog and another has an allergy to dogs, it may be best to keep the dog and his/her owner far from the allergic employee.

Conditions in Which Service Dogs Won’t Be Allowed in the Workplace The employer has the right to deny the request of a disabled employee to bring his/her service dog to the workplace only if any or all of certain conditions are applicable. The employer must be aware, however, that in conditions such as those below, the burden of proof is laid on the employer and not his/her employee:

The service animal, as defined in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) or other laws relevant to it, does not meet the definition. The service animal’s presence would be an interference with the ability of the employer to conduct or transact business. The employee has not been deemed qualified as an individual with disability as per the ADA, state law or the Rehabilitation Act. The employer will be unduly burdened by the service animal’s presence.

How Things Can Work with Service Dogs in the Office Employers should be aware that they may be held liable if an animal is allowed in the office and injures employees, customers or just about anybody who happens to be in the workplace like the pizza delivery boy or the CEO of a potential investor. The only solution to this is to ask the owner to get insurance coverage for injuries which may be caused by his/her service dog.

In cases of damage to company property – including computers, carpets, furniture, office equipment, and even files – insurance would be one way of rectifying the situation; indemnification would be another in the form of financial reimbursement if the service dog destroys personal property of another employee that was, rightfully, in the workplace. The service dog’s owner could also cover the damages.

An employer who is okay with service dogs in the office but leases office space would have to ask permission from the building owner before the canines are allowed inside. If you aren’t too clear on any policy of the building owner regarding the presence of service dogs in the premises, read the lease agreement again. If there is a policy that states animals are not allowed in the building, negotiate or compromise.

Although the jury has yet to decide whether or not an allergy to animals may be classified a disability as per the ADA of 1990, an employer has to ensure that he/she does not commit a violation of the ADA. If you are caught in a dilemma in which one employee requires the service dog and another has an allergy to dogs, it may be best to keep the dog and his/her owner far from the allergic employee.

[Editor’s Note: Please be aware that this material does not serve as legal advice. As with all blog content discussing landlord-tenant legalities, be sure to consult Federal and State laws specific to your area before implementing any of this advice into your practices.]

 

Training a Service Dog in 10 Simple Steps

Training a service dog

Service dogs are fantastic for helping those who are disabled in a variety of ways. But service dog training is no joke. Training a service dog can take a lot of care and time. Here, we will tell you about service dog training in a few simple steps:

Think about the demeanor of your dog. A service dog needs to be focused, courageous, kind, and intelligent. Get your dog spayed or neutered. This will cost a few hundred dollars. Training a service dog that has been spayed or neutered is much simpler than training a dog who may want to still mate. Practice training your dog to be obedience. You can teach them using signals, words, or using a clicker. Part of this training should also include teaching them to remain calm, not react to other people or animals, and keeping calm while leashed or not leashed. Give your dog a bit of agility training. This will help them to better recognize and understand commands. Get your dog out there to meet other dogs, pets, and people. You want to be sure your dog remains calm in every possible situation, including interacting with new people and things on a daily basis. Take your dog new places. Teach them to only care for their trainer and/or the person they will be serving. They should not be easily distracted by anything in the environment. Start teaching your dog specific things to help you with. This can be a variety of jobs and things. For instance, you might want to teach them to help you cross the road, fetch things around your home for you, or guarding you. Start slow. Work your way up to more complicated and harder tasks during service dog training. Training a service dog takes lots of time, so be patient! If needed, be sure to have your service dog certified by your vet, doctor. Check the laws in your country or local area to see if you actually need to do this step. Even if it is not required, it may still be a good idea. Place your service dog, or work with yet another animal to train them, as well. Over time, you may be able to get into training a service dog or other animals for payment or with a specific organization.

 

For more information visit ServiceDogCertifications.org.

Training service dogs

Service Dog Training

A service dog, unlike other dogs is one that is trained to help people with physical, psychological, and hearing impairment. Please remember that there are many psychological disabilities that can be hidden from plain sight.

The tricks for good service dog training

Training your dog the basics among the various distractions and in new environments is part of being a good handler. This will most definitely help you evade future behavioral issues. The best training will strengthen your bond with your service dog. When you are training your dog, you are actually teaching the dog to share a common language of words accompanied by signals. Training your dog obedience commands provides you with a vocabulary for communicating with him/her effectively.

What you should do in a training session

Every service dog training session should begin with a quick warm-up, despite your dog’s proficiency level. Make sure to continue with past repetitions with your dog before engaging in any new steps. Always ensure that your dog training sessions are fairly short, such as five to thirty minutes. It is advisable to always end each session at a positive point, since this will help your dog remember the session even better. However, it is convenient not to agonize about which exact repetition you end on, and work on what you want to work on. Nevertheless, ensure that you are faithful to the push-drop-stick rule, and have your dog do the steps in order.

Training Session

The four basic behaviors that constitute obedience include: sit, watch, down, come, and stay. Sitting along with lying down can replace jumping on people or begging at the table. Asking your dog to sit and watch can get you out of countless jams while you are out on walks. Your dog will not strain at or bark at people on the street if he is sitting and watching. If your dog comes to you when called, he can be granted off-leash access, which in turn mentally as well as physically tires him. Sits and downs are prerequisites for stays.

There is no rush for verbal commands. One of the biggest errors you can do as a trainer of a service dog is chat commands. You are not to introduce verbal commands, not until a behavior is far along. Therefore, once your dog performs reliably for a hand signal, you can thereafter start placing the verbal commands. Remember, always before, and never during or after the hand signal. By following this, the verbal predicts the learned signal, leading to a Pavlov’s dog effect over time. Your dog will start responding to the verbal cue as he did to the hand signal. You will realize that when you train more advanced behaviors in future, a great deal of training takes place before you give it a name.

Use of Dog Shock Collar

There are many handlers that use shock collars, but I am not a proponent of using punishment for negative behaviors. Negative reinforcement can work, but there have been studies that suggest this type of behavior correction can be stressful for dogs.

Basic rewards for training

To effectively install obedience on your dog; you will need to crank out many repetitions, rewarding your dog after each one of them. The more you train your dog the stronger the behavior gets. Whatever motivates your dog should be something that he or she is willing to work for. The most basic motivator is food; your dog will be motivated by and will work for food. Apart from the normal training, a shock collar will install the behaviors you need most your dog to possess.