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Application Process

Should you be interested in acquiring a service dog from the CSTDA, the following is a typical process:

  • An interested participant completes the application form.



  • Initial characterization of the participant and his/her requirements by a multidisciplinary team. Factors that are considered include the general health, physical condition, age, communication ability and lifestyle of the client.

  • An interview with the support team / family may be conducted for participant who are cognitively challenged, to determine the families expectations of acquiring a service dog, how having a service dog might affect other family members and if there are any lifestyle or health factors that would determine the suitability of breed of dog.

  • Exposure of the participant to a number of dogs to assess his/her fitness level, limitations and how he/she relates to dogs. A contract is signed and a suitable dog identified for the participant family. Dogs may be sourced as puppies or from dogs currently in training.

  • An individualised training program is designed for the dog, in consultation with psychological and medical personnel to ensure that the dog meets the participant’s needs.

  • Training the dog (general behaviour, basic training, advanced training)

  • Training the participant to utilise the dog effectively after initial training is complete.

  • As it takes time to train a replacement dog, an application for a replacement service dog should be placed as soon as retirement is considered for an existing dog.

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