What Can Emotional Service Dogs Help With?

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, making it the perfect time to discuss what exactly emotional service dogs can help with. Emotional support dogs do more than just offer companionship – they are specially trained to provide comfort and support to individuals facing various mental and physical health challenges. They can help with a wide variety of mental health conditions and are trained to help in individualized and specific ways, making them immensely helpful and effective. In this blog, we’ll go over what they can help with, how they can help, and provide resources to help you on your journey.

Is There Anything Emotional Service Dogs Can’t Help With?

To start, it may be easier to go over what emotional service dogs can’t help with. Emotional service dogs cannot help with interpersonal marital difficulties or any ability that incurs a lack of empathy for (or inability to care for) animals – including sociopathy and oppositional defiance disorder.

What Mental Health Conditions Do Emotional Service Dogs Help?

We often get asked what conditions psychiatric and emotional service dogs can help with. The answer is that emotional service dogs can help with a wide variety of them, including:

  • Acute Stress Disorder
  • Anorexia
  • Avoidant Personality Disorder
  • Binge Eating Disorder
  • Bipolar
  • Borderline Personality Disorder
  • Bulimia
  • Depression
  • General and Social Anxiety
  • OCD
  • Panic Disorders
  • PTSD
  • Schizophrenia
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder
  • Separation Anxiety
  • Substance Abuse/Addiction
  • Trauma

How Do Emotional Service Dogs Help Mental Health Conditions?

Each person and their dog are different. However, some ways that emotional service dogs can help with specific mental health conditions are:

  • Providing love and companionship
  • Encouraging movement (walks) and activity
  • Helping establish routines
  • Providing a sense of purpose and responsibility
  • Recognizing tells
  • Reminding to take medication
  • Grounding during episodes or panic attacks
  • Encouraging social interaction
  • Reducing anxiety
  • Interrupting harmful behaviors
  • Providing a sense of security and protection
  • Reducing isolation
  • Providing distraction and gentle redirection from thoughts, behaviors, or actions
  • Establishing safety (for example, turning on a light before their owner enters the room to show it is safe)
  • Helping with the regulation of emotions
  • Encouraging regular eating

It’s important to remember that your emotional service dog can be trained to help you in whatever way you need!

What Else Can Emotional Service Dogs Help With?

Emotional service dogs are immensely helpful for those in the LGBTQIA+ community, those with ADHD/ADD, and even the elderly community.

Those in the LGBTQIA+ community find that emotional service dogs can help with trauma, provide love and support, and help with the complex emotions that come with navigating sexuality or gender identity. For those with ADHD/ADD, emotional service dogs can help with time blindness, establishing routines, medication reminders, and task reminders. Additionally, even mild exercise, such as walking your dog, can help the flow of dopamine and serotonin to your brain!  

Lastly, emotional service dogs can help the elderly community by providing a sense of independence and helping with loneliness and isolation. They can also help with Alzheimer’s and dementia helping to calm and soothe if their owner experiences sundowning.

How to Get an Emotional Service Dog

At Fetch and More, we proudly offer virtual emotional service dog training, and we also specialize in providing pre-trained emotional service dogs based on your needs. With over 20 years of experience, certifications, and innovative virtual training model, we ensure that each dog is prepared to meet the specific needs of their handler.

In addition to being easy to prepare for, our virtual training model is flexible, adaptable, and accessible. You can reach out to us at any time during training, and we will help guide you through any hiccups and be there to celebrate the wins with you.

To get started, you can sign up for our virtual emotional service dog training course, or contact us to discuss any questions you may have.


Below are some resources to help you, wherever you are in your journey. These resources contain chat/text and call options, informative materials, and resources for those who are trying to help a loved one.

Additionally, at Fetch and More, our head trainer, John Bellocchio, is an expert in protecting and advocating for your rights. We offer virtual disability support services and drug pricing advocacy services to help ensure you receive all the support you need.

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