TASK TRAINING Psychiatric service dog tasks vary to mitigate specific disability needs. Here are a few examples:
Deep Pressure Therapy prevent or recover from panic attacks.
Tactile Stimulation licking or pawing can ground handler in extreme distress.
Blocking creates more space for their handler.
Interruption of Self Harming by licking, pawing, or barking.
Guide Work and Mobility helps with disassociating, during panic attacks, and when disoriented.
A Psychiatric Service Dog is specifically trained to assist their handler with a disability as defined by the ADA such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), schizophrenia, depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder. An exceptional psychiatric service dog is individually trained to do work and perform tasks that mitigate their handler’s disability.
The Exceptional Sidekick (TESSD) provides psychiatric service dogs to support disabled teens and young adults, empowering young handlers to complete their education and live independently. You must be in therapy for a minimum of one year and believe a service dog could drastically improve your life, to apply. Service dogs are provided at no cost for ages 12-22 that reside in Newtown, and to others within Connecticut able to make a donation or willing to fundraise half the cost of raising and training the dog.