Some of the best dogs in the world are service dog dropouts!
Almost half the dogs who train to assist people with disabilities don’t graduate or go on to work in the service dog field. But the silver lining is the awesome dogs who “fail” to become service dogs almost always go up for adoption!
There is nothing wrong with the puppies that don’t make the cut. But helping individuals with physical, cognitive, or auditory issues requires a specific mix of learned physical skills and temperament. Not all dogs have that special sauce. Most dogs that fail at being service animals simply lack confidence or are considered easily distractable. These are typical puppy traits but can quickly disqualify a dog from moving on to a life of service.
Other service dogs-in-training don’t make it through the learning process because they are not a fit for the specific service dog role they were training for.
The good news is: these doggie dropouts are adoptable!
“The silver lining is these awesome dogs who ‘fail’ to become service dogs almost always go up for adoption!”
Breeds like Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, German Shepherds, Poodles, and mixes of these breeds are most commonly trained to be service dogs. Just because they don’t meet service dog standards doesn’t mean they aren’t friendly, intelligent, and able to learn quickly. In other words, they can make the perfect family pet!
Organizations like The Seeing Eye, Service Dogs Inc., Guide Dogs for the Blind, and Guide Dogs of America maintain lists of vetted applicants. These are families like yours who are ready to receive a puppy that fails service dog “kindergarten.” Service dog dropouts are typically between the ages of 1 ½ and 2 years old… the perfect age to begin their second life with a loving family!
If you are interested in getting on the list for one of these organizations, call directly and inquire! They will answer any questions that you might have and give you more information on their adoption procedures!