For many people with disabilities, service dogs perform major tasks for a better quality of life. Though the assistance that they provide is essential to many people’s lives, it is not cheap. While getting a service dog may seem like a daunting and stressful task, it certainly isn’t an impossible one.
So, how much does a trained service dog cost?
Typically, you can expect to buy an already trained service for $15,000 to $50,000 upfront, although the amount will vary. It depends on the breed of dog, type of training, and other factors. In some cases, a service dog can cost up to $60,000.
Why are service dogs so expensive?
Because of the extensive training and additional care they should receive, getting a trained service dog from a service dog provider can be a daunting, stressful, and expensive endeavor.
Are There Any Financial Assistance Programs or Resources For Those In Need Of a Service Dog?
The good news is Yes, there are other financing options available.
There are several organizations that help people with disabilities find service dogs for little or no cost. However, it could take several years longer to get a service dog in this way. Filling out the application might take a few minutes or a few hours. But reputable organizations will often conduct several rounds of interviews before allowing you to adopt.
Besides, each non-profit organization has its own program and eligibility criteria. Find the organizations, make sure that you qualify before filling out the applications — and try to get them in as soon as possible to secure a spot on the list. The common programs for individuals with special needs are:
• For veterans
• For people with Autism
• For people with Mobility issues
• For people with Visual impairment
• For people with General health concerns
• For children with disabilities or other needs
There is no federal or state funding specifically available to pay the costs of purchasing a service dog for a person with a disability. Therefore, fundraising has become more feasible with online fundraising platforms like GoFundMe. These platforms can make it possible to share your personal story across the world. Even donations of a few dollars here and there start to add up.
Major insurance providers typically don’t cover the price of a service dog or its training, but some smaller providers may offer partial coverage.
Can I train my own service dog?
Yes. You may train your service dog yourself. Many people are not aware that service animal tasks can be trained in the comfort of their own home!
The ADA does not require service or support animals to receive professional training from agencies or individuals. This means that an owner could, in theory, train their dog if they desire to do so. There are training courses and service dog certifications available online that can assist in this, including The Certified Intensive Service Dog Training Course.
The Certified Intensive Service Dog Training Course - Train Your Own Service Dog In Only 10 Weeks is designed for individuals who are not professional trainers or staff members of an organization planning to self-train their own service dogs.
You can get started as soon as you have acquired a suitable dog (of any age). This course will take you through the first stage of laying a firm foundation for the more complicated tasks and responsibilities that will transform your dog from a “Service Dog in Training” to a full-fledged Service Dog.
In this course, you will
• learn all the important skills of service dog training;
• learn how to teach your dog step by step to help you deal with your daily life challenges;
• be able to train your dog specifically for the type of disabilities you have;
• be assigned to a professional service dog trainer as your own individual tutor for any questions you might have during the online training.
Best of all, it costs only 399.00 USD and you can study the course anywhere.
Getting a service dog may seem demanding, but it is certainly not impossible. There are people and organizations out there designed to help people find, train, and afford a service dog. The best-fit companion can improve your quality of life and serve you for years to come.