Canines 4 Hope, Psychiatric Service Dogs - Raising Awareness

CANINES4HOPE.ORG   ~   A Non Profit Organization
Psychiatric Service Dogs - Raising Awareness
Raising Awareness through Educational Events and
Providing Guidance and Support for those in need of a Service Dog
Phone:  772-631-4932

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Psychiatric Service Dogs

Psychiatric Service Dogs are specially trained dogs that help people with psychiatric or mental health problems. A Psychiatric Service Dog can help the owner manage anxiety attacks and panic attacks helping to relieve the symptoms  through contact. Psychiatric Service Dogs can alert an individual with obsessive-compulsive behaviors by "pawing" and distracting them from the unfavorable behavior.
Psychiatric Service Dogs
Psychiatric Service Dogs help with psychiatric conditions such as:

  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Anxiety
  • Severe Depression
  • Panic Attacks
  • Phobias
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorders

Psychiatric Service Dog Training
Like all assistance dogs, a psychiatric service dog is individually trained to do work or perform tasks that mitigate their handler's disability. Training to mitigate a psychiatric disability may include providing environmental assessment (in such cases as paranoia or hallucinations), signaling behaviors such as interrupting repetitive or injurious behaviors), reminding the handler to take medication, retrieving objects, guiding the handler form stressful situation , or acting as a brace if the handler becomes dizzy.

Psychiatric Dogs are trained to:

  • Assistance in a medical crisis
  • Provide treatment related assistance
  • Assistance in coping with emotional overload
  • Perform security enhancement tasks

Psychiatric service dogs may be any breed or size suitable for public work. Some psychiatric service dogs are trained by the the person who will become the handler - usually with the help of a professional trainer by assistance or service dog programs.

A Psychiatric Service Dogs give their owner a reason to get out of bed every morning and go to work or an activity. These wonderful dogs provide loving care 7 days a week, 24 hours a day.

Seizure Alert Dog / Depression Service Dog, Marc's Story

Psychiatric Service Dog TrainingMy husband Marc was a successful general contractor in Central Florida who was involved in numerous projects within the Disney community.

Four years ago he suffered a traumatic brain injury that left him with severe neurological damage, and he lost his ability to speak. As a result of his injury Marc also suffers from major depression as well as seizures.

Marc, was once a vibrant man, but has now lost his drive and energy to do anything. After all of the surgeries, and countless hours of rehabilitation, Marc has shown little enthusiasm towards his outlook on life and his future.

Our neurologist suggested we look into a service dog to help assist Marc with his seizures. After careful research, we met Jason DeVito the owner of Canines4hope. Jason paired Marc up with Dillon, A two year old German Shepherd Dog who is trained as a seizure response dog for Marc.

The addition of Dillon in our lives has been a true blessing. The difference in my husbands behavior, and outlook on life is remarkable. Marc is a changed man. His bouts of depression have improved, and his energy level is totally increased. Marc and Dillon are outside every morning playing ball or Frisbee. He takes Dillon for three walks a day at least.

Dillon is now beginning to recognize when Marc is about to have a seizure, which makes me feel a whole lot better when I have to leave Marc alone.

Dillon has changed our lives in so many ways that words cannot express my feelings. If you or someone you know, is in a similar situation as Marc or myself, we highly encourage you to explore the benefits of a service dog.
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