Dogs are one of the world’s most popular pets with over 400 million domestic dogs worldwide. They are mostly kept as companions, but over time, dogs have been trained to serve much more complex purposes. Dogs with the ability to carry out these special tasks are known as service dogs.
Service dogs are often hailed as the heroes of the canine world. They are trained to understand human interaction and behavior to a much higher degree than the average dog to help make people’s lives easier.
They serve a wide range of purposes, but they mainly help people with physical disabilities or different health conditions. Most dog breeds can be trained to carry out complex tasks, but certain breeds are known for making excellent service dogs. Below, we will take a look at some of the most popular dog breeds suitable for the job.
The Labrador Retriever is one of the most intelligent dog breeds. These dogs have a great understanding of human interaction, and they master training faster than most other dog breeds, making them one of the most trustworthy service dogs. Labs were also one of the first service dogs in ancient times.
They are now mostly used to aid physically disabled individuals due to their fantastic ability to retrieve and carry objects with ease. Their high energy also makes them popular in the military and other law enforcement agencies.
Pomeranians are dogs you might not associate with service due to their small size. Most service dogs are much larger and capable of handling physical tasks. Still, Pomeranians make up for the lack of brawn by being one of the smartest dog breeds in the world. They are not accustomed to physically demanding tasks. Still, they possess talents other canines lack like being able to detect when an owner’s blood sugar reaches dangerously high or low levels.
Yes, they are that sensitive. Pomeranians are very helpful to people with health issues. For example, they can detect asthma or heart attacks, among other health conditions, making them true canine lifesavers. They can also alert owners with hearing impairments to sounds like a doorbell or an alarm. Pomeranians might require some extra care to keep them in peak condition as compared to other dog breeds, but they make wonderful service dogs.
German Shepherds have built a very strong reputation for being reliable police dogs. The second most popular dog breed in the US, these dogs are not just good at working with police officers—they make excellent personal service dogs as well. These alert dogs are known for being easy to train by mastering instructions quicker than most other dogs. German Shepherds have just about everything you want in a service dog—they are smart, well-behaved, protective, and strong.
They are also highly versatile as they can help disabled and physically impaired owners. Their protective instincts make them brilliant guard dogs, and their strong sense of smell helps them monitor people’s blood sugar levels. They have also been known to detect anxiety and panic attacks in people, as well as ignore commands that might endanger their owners’ safety.
Golden Retrievers are excellent family dogs. Their calm demeanor and friendliness make them great pets, but these characteristics also mean they make wonderful service dogs. Their large size makes them perfect guide dogs for people with disabilities. Just like Labradors, they can help carry items around and fetch objects for their owners.
Goldies are also highly recommended for disabled kids. They can carry items, alert people to sounds, and serve as guides for children with physical disabilities.
The largest of the Poodle clan, Standard Poodles are the epitome of versatility. This special breed has a loving personality with exceptional intelligence to match. They also have a strong drive to work and please their owners, making them excellent service dogs.
In general, Poodles are easy to train, and Standard Poodles are no different. They learn fast and are incredibly adaptable, carrying out a wide range of tasks with ease from guiding to retrieving, and alerting owners to sounds. They also have a unique ability to detect food allergens through scent, which is a potential life-saving trait.
Bernese Mountain Dog
Nicknamed gentle giants, Bernese Mountain Dogs are known for their large size that is accompanied by a calm and friendly demeanor. They exhibit most of the traits you would want from a good service dog, such as work ethic, intelligence, and a very friendly disposition. Their size makes them brilliant for guiding their owners.
Just like Golden Retrievers, Bernese Mountain Dogs have a tendency to form strong bonds with kids. Their ability to retrieve and guide and their playful nature makes them the perfect pet and service dog for kids. They can also perform more complex tasks like bringing medications, opening doors, and getting help during emergencies if trained properly.
Dogs have been given the title of man’s best friend for a long time due to their eagerness to help and assist people. Service dogs have taken that trait to the next level. They are dogs trained to aid and protect people with disabilities.
Most dog breeds can be trained to be service dogs, but certain breeds like the ones listed above are known for being highly efficient in providing services to disabled people. Adopting service dogs is highly recommended for people with disabilities as these canines are of invaluable help.
Article written by Elma Mrkonjic, Content Coordinator at PetPedia