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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What breeds are best for service work?

    • We recommend Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, Rough/Smooth Collies and Poodles for service work. They tend to be confident, quick learners and friends to all. Interested in learning more? Shoot us a message for our breeder referral list. 

  • Why are some breeds better than others for service work

    • ​Some breeds such as herding dogs are extremely intelligent and can learn very quickly. Why don't we use them in service work very often, then? With these dogs speed also comes sensitivity. They notice movement, changes in our emotions/bodies and a million other details we likely miss. Sometimes, when training for psychiatric or medical alert the dogs become reactive to dogs, people or other environmental stimuli. While this might not happen, when picking out a prospect you don't want to take chances on a dog that might not work out. 

  • ​Do I need to start with a puppy

    • ​Here at Medi-Dogs, we believe that you can train a dog at any age. A dog that is calm, confident and motivated to learn has the possibility of becoming a service dog. Puppies started from the beginning can be a better bet when you do not have an existing dog that can be a service dog prospect. Unsure if your dog would be a good fit? Email us to schedule an evaluation!

  • How long does training take

    • ​Length of training will depend on the dog's age and skills coming into the program. Puppies will not be started in formal public access skills until 6 months old to reduce burnout. That being said, they will be doing socialization outings multiple times a week. Most clients are in my program for 1.5 to 2 years to complete all public access and task training We recommend getting started in our program as soon as your puppy comes home. We can recommend puppy classes, activities and equipment that will set your pup up for success with service work down the line. 

  • ​Should I bring my puppy prospect in stores right away

    • ​Puppies should be brought to many new places before they reach 16 weeks of age. For health and safety reasons we recommend keeping them in a backpack or wagon. They should not be going in places that are not dog friendly at this point. Once they know how to navigate public spaces without impeding the public or other working dogs, they can begin working in non-dog friendly public spaces depending on your local laws. 

Service dog, border collie, wearing vest and smiling at the camera.
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