Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Service Dogs - Thoughts?

I think I should get a service dog - a Psychiatric Service Dog specially trained for Schizotypal-Autism and PTSD. Schizotypal-Autism btw - is Asperger's on the farthest end of the bell curve - it's one of the rarest forms of Autism and is thought to be a person with both Asperger's and Schizophrenia at the same time. They have special service dogs trained for Schizotypal-Autism PTSD Agoraphobics. Weird. There must be other Schizotypal-Autism PTSD Agoraphobics out there, otherwise there would not be service dogs for us

They cost at minimum $13,500 - no idea how I can get that kind of money when I make under $2,000 per year, though :( If people with Schizotypal-Autism w/PTSD and; Agoraphobia are typically homeless and unemployed, why do Service dogs for Schizotypal-Autism PTSD Agoraphobics cost $13,500 - $20,000?

I used to have an ESP (Emotional Support Pet) but he died Nov 2008, and my ability to function on my own has not been good. I had him for 13 years and I guess, I relied on him a lot more than I realized I did. My recent additional health issues has made life very difficult and living alone is hard now - a PSD (Psychiatric Service Dog) would help so much.

It is possible to train your own dog, but still, a purebred dog starts at $2,000 - more than I make in one year, while shelter and rescue dogs start at $500 - which is more than 4 months worth of my income. Getting a dog is nearly impossible, without a better income and getting a better income is nearly impossible without a service dog to help me get around.

I had Junior for 16 years and Buddy for 13 years, so for 29 years I relied heavily on the assistance of these two wonderful dogs, without realizing just how big of an impact they really did have on my life. I have been dog less for a few days less than a year now. This past year I think has been the hardest of my entire life. Those who knew me best, knew my dogs went every where with me and I was never without them - ask anyone who ever saw me in church - as much as they found reason to hate me and shun me, they always did find time to stop in the hall to pet and talk to my dogs, cats, squirrels, and roosters (all of which attended Sunday School at my side on a weekly basis for many years.) I think I must have been the only person to ever have leash train therapy roosters walking at my side and sitting beside my in class, but these were trained therapy roosters and as much as Bishop Mo. had hysterics, Maine law says no public building can bar access to a service animal of any type, including service roosters. So my Bearded Collie Junior, attended church with me every Sunday for 16 years, with Xavier the Rooster (the original Xavier - the first of many Xaviers) riding on her back. While other roosters, other cats, and on a few occasions, Azreal the Squirrel, also attended church with me on regular occasions, Junior the Beared Collie never missed a week and Xavier the Rooster rarely did either.

The last of the therapy roosters, Xavier III and Chup-Chup (of the Xavy-Chup fame) died in 2007 each aged 12 years old. Buddy the Cocker Spaniel died November 2008 aged 13. Today only one of my original team of church attending therapy animals still lives - Utopia, the now blind and deaf, 13 year old Albino Siamese cat.

Training and being assisted by my team of service dogs, cats, and roosters, took up most of my 35 years. After the vandalism and harassment went to the extreme, in 2006, resulting in the destruction of my property, my house being set fire too, and 75 of my pets being brutal slaughtered and left hanging in my rose bushes - I discontinued the raising and training of therapy animals. It was clear that these people were ruthless and would only kill any animal I had, should I get more to replace the ones they already killed. I had Buddy throughout this time though, and thinking back now, I don't think I would have survived being homeless and living those years under the tarp, if I had not had Buddy at my side. I realize now, I relied heavily on Buddy's assistance though out that time, and had I not had Buddy's help, it is unlikely that I could have lived through my time of homelessness.

This past year without Buddy, has shown me, that I really can no get by very well on my own, and I am in need of another service dog to help me out. The trouble now, is how to get one. Buoth of my previous service dogs were rejects; dog who not only washed out of service dog training, but were not suitable for pets either.

Junior suffered from "Nervous Bladder Syndrome" - you looked at her, she peed; you spoke too loud, she peed; you slammed the door, she peed; you threw a ball, she peed - pretty much any sound or movement resulted in a huge puddle on the floor. No amount of training or medication could cure her. No one else had the patience to deal with a dog that simply got so happy she couldn't stop peeing, and so she ended up with me. In the end, the cure was to buy lots of cloth baby diapers and fix them to have tail holes in them, and Junior spent her 16 years of life as the giant, Therapy Dog who had to wear diapers.

I don't believe there are bad dogs, just dogs that are misunderstood. Buddy, was a dog, deeply misunderstood. Buddy was a really bad dog, gone really really bad, and about to be put to sleep for repeatedly aggressively attacking and mauling small children. Buddy suffered from "Tail docking fear syndrome" - similar to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in humans, it is caused when a breeder waits too long to dock a pup's tail, and the up suffered great pain and infection from the docking and from that point on, viewed every human as "the enemy" and instinctively responded to all humans by attack first, kill now, think later. If anyone had stopped to find out what was going on in his little doggy head, they would have realized, Buddy wasn't mean - Buddy was scared. He was afraid because one human hurt him, that all humans would hurt him and so he was defending himself before giving them a chance to hurt him again. Buddy had a phobia of humans and he was responding in the only logical way he knew how. In his mind it was kill or be killed.

Buddy's kill now, think later, got him into a lot of trouble and by the time he was a year old he was destined to death row, unless something drastic could be done - like find a human he did not try to kill on sight. Our meeting went like this - Buddy took one look at me, tore into my arm and was not going to let go until he had torn it off or killed me trying - I grabbed his ear and held his head down to the ground and would not let go until he let go of my arm. I don't know how long this went on, but apparently I was the first and only human to fight back, no one had ever before challenged Buddy's Alpha Dog authority, everyone else screamed and ran. Me, I grabbed his ear and didn't let go.  He bit me, I bit back. One thing I knew when it came to training dogs - YOU have to establish your self as the Pack Leader Prime Alpha Dog - if you don't, you'll never train the dog at all. In the end, Buddy gave up and let go first. He backed down and submitted to the fact that I was a better Alpha Dog than he was, and from that day forth, I never again had a problem with him, and for the next 13 years, he was my ever faithful, extremely devoted, best friend. In my life time I have had a total of 12 dogs. Of all the dogs I had, it was Buddy, the most violent, dangerous, mean, and aggressive dog I have ever seen or heard of, who went on the become my best dog and most loyal, faithful, and obsessively devoted companion. All he needed was for someone to love him and give him a chance to prove just how good a dog he really could be. I stand by my theory that there is no such thing as a bad dog. All a "bad" dog needs is a human that understands how to work around his special needs. Dogs have phobias and special needs issues just like people.

In both cases the dog came to me free - both dogs were rescue dogs - both were "special needs" dogs that needed a lot more time and care than your average pet-dog or service-dog would have needed - both would never have graduated from a traditional service dog training school, due to their special needs - both were trained by me, and because my focus was on helping them get through their special needs, rather than training them to help me, they ended up becoming better help to me than had I focused on traditional training skills.

A lot has changed since getting Buddy 14 years ago. One of those changes is laws that no longer give dogs like Buddy a second chance. Today it's one bite and your dead, usual shot on sight by police officers. The "I'm-so-happy-to-see-you-I-peed-on-the-floor" dogs like Junior don't make it to the front room cages in the shelter; they are simply put to sleep without an option to find a home. Why? Because both types of dogs are "free for the taking" type dogs, and in this day and age, a dog that does not bring in big bucks for the shelter, is not a dog the shelters will deal with anymore. Twenty-Nine years ago when I got Junior - shelter dogs cost $35; 14 years ago, when I got Buddy, that same shelter had raised it's prices to $78 for a dog. Now? Right now they have a Staffordshire Bull Terrier (aka a Pit-Bull) named Merlin. He's good with cats, he loves the shelter's 300+ cats. He's good with me. He's very good with me. He's very eager to please. I think he would do good in service dog training. He'd do good in a home with 19 cats. The problem? The shelter wants $700 for him.

Another local shelter has a Buff Cocker Spaniel. She's not good with cats. She's not good with children. She's not good with people period. She's nervous, skittish, and bites. She bites babies, small children, teenagers, and adults. She growls, she snaps, she's mean, she's bad tempered, no one can get near her, and she can't stay with a single foster family because so far they are all too scared of her to keep her. She not yet, even 2 years old. The shelter is desperate to find someone any one who is willing to give this really bad dog a chance, or at least someone who is not so scared of her that they can give her a home. They don't want to put her to sleep but she's such a problem they may have to. Boy is that a deja vue. It's Buddy all over again. I'll take her, just as quick as I took Buddy. There's just this small matter of $500 that has to be paid to the shelter before we can let you have her. Uhm-hmm. I'm homeless. Where am I going to get $500 from? I thought you were so desperate to give her a home? Just HAD to find some one with prior experience with a bad tempered out of control Cocker? Really? You don't care about finding someone who is willing to care for this dog - all you care about is your $500 profit. How sick is that? You would deny that little girl a home with some one who is willing to take her and work with her special needs, because you have to have your precious money? You pitiful compassionless, excuse for a human, how dare you waste the air I need to breath!

My severer inability to function on my own without a dog to help me, has proven itself out this past year since Buddy died. So, here I am now looking into getting a service dog, but finding that the starting price is $13,500 for an already trained service dog - a cost that is equal to 7 years on income for me, which means getting an already trained service dog is pretty much out of the question. Training my own is going to have to be my better option, unless something happens to change my financial situation in the near future. I can't afford a breed dog either, so shelter dogs are my option, but now I find that shelters are charging breeder prices for dogs, so what other options are out there? How do I get another dog?

This is a puzzling and frustrating situation, that I do not know yet how to work out. Somehow I will find a way to get another service dog. If I have to train him myself, than so be it, since I see no way to afford a professional trained one, but the prices for dogs being what they are, I don't see how I can afford any dog at all, even rescue reject dogs are priced like they were gold plated these days!

My preferance is for Cocker Spaniels, having worked with them for many years already and being Autistic I work best with things I'm already familiar working with, so I'm focusing at the moment on finding a rescue Cocker to train as a service dog, or a rescue cocker already trained as a Psychiatric Service Dog specially trained for Schizotypal-Autism and PTSD.

Taking the suggestion found here:

Next consider your personality; it is important to get a dog you enjoy working with. Hounds and terriers, bred to chase game or rodents, are independently-minded. Dogs bred to retrieve game tend to enjoy working for people. Dogs bred for guard work require confident handling. Toy breed dogs bred for companionship are focused on their humans. The book “Why We Love the Dogs We Do: How to Find the Dog That Matches Your Personality” by Stanley Coren contains a personality quiz and discusses what types of dogs match with different personalities. There are free quizzes online that, given your personality and other preferences, match you with breeds. My favorites are http://dogtime.com/matchup and http://www.k9country.com/perl/dogBreed.pl. Also, talk to a professional trainer. Trainers are invaluable sources of information and advice. Keep in mind that while it is ideal that your trainer has some service dog experience, trainers that have not trained service dogs before, but do advanced training like competition obedience, dog sports, search and rescue, or who are evaluators for the Canine Good Citizen test can also be of great help. Good trainers have had experience with many breeds and can give you insight on how you would interact with dogs of different types. Additionally, other people who have trained their own service dogs can advise you on what breeds might work for you on various internet forums or listservs like the Psychiatric Service Dog Society listserv http://www.psychdog.org/listserv.html.

took this test and here are the top 5 dog breeds, which it recommends I choose as a service dog - shockingly,  (or maybe not so shocking - considering we got along so well) the breed of my former ESP, Buddy, is on the list: Cocker Spaniel!

your top 5 personality matches

  •   German Pinscher 
    or German Pinscher mix
    With the energy and drive of all working breeds, the German Pinscher also displays the love and devotion that make him an outstanding companion.

    This breed is an especially good match for your responses to these questions: "What size dog are you considering?", "How smart would you like your dog to be?", "What's your party style?", "What kind of home do you have?", "Are you planning to bring a new baby into your home within the next few years?"
  •   American Water Spaniel 
    or American Water Spaniel mix
    The state dog of Wisconsin is an enthusiastic water retriever and family friend.

    This breed is an especially good match for your responses to these questions: "What size dog are you considering?", "What's your party style?", "What kind of home do you have?", "Are you planning to bring a new baby into your home within the next few years?"
  •   Clumber Spaniel 
    or Clumber Spaniel mix
    The easygoing Clumber has a loyal spirit and tender heart.

    This breed is an especially good match for your responses to these questions: "What size dog are you considering?", "How smart would you like your dog to be?", "What's your party style?", "What kind of home do you have?", "Are you planning to bring a new baby into your home within the next few years?"
  •   Cocker Spaniel 
    or Cocker Spaniel mix
    Sensitive and charming, the Cocker Spaniel has enjoyed widespread popularity for decades.

    This breed is an especially good match for your responses to these questions: "What size dog are you considering?", "How smart would you like your dog to be?", "What's your party style?", "What kind of home do you have?", "Are you planning to bring a new baby into your home within the next few years?"
  •   English Cocker Spaniel 
    or English Cocker Spaniel mix
    His cheery disposition and eternally wagging tail have earned this dog the nickname of "Merry Cocker."

    This breed is an especially good match for your responses to these questions: "What size dog are you considering?", "How smart would you like your dog to be?", "What's your party style?", "What kind of home do you have?", "Are you planning to bring a new baby into your home within the next few years?"
noteThese results are meant to be used as a guide only, and help you to think more deeply about what you need, want, and like in a dog.

key features you should look for in a dog

  • Friendly enough: You don't need to be everyone's friend so your dog doesn't need to be either. Look for reasonably friendly dogs.
  • Barely controlled chaos: Since life at home can be a little intense at times, you need a resilient dog unfazed by noise and chaos. Look for resilient, or "low-sensitivity," dogs.
  • Buddies: You probably want a low-key happy-go-lucky dog who's comfortable with your own relaxed style. Look for dogs that are good for novice owners.
  • Good with little kids: Look for a puppy, or dog, who's likely to be tolerant of unpredictable behavior. Older, mellower dogs are often good matches for families with small children. Look for kid-friendly dogs.
  • Good with older kids: Since your children are old enough to be taught to behave around dogs, it's not as important you find a really easygoing dog. Look forkid-friendly dogs.
  • Spatially challenged: The typical apartment dog is small and doesn't bark so much he'll disturb your neighbors. But a number of big dogs do fine in small spaces, too, especially if they're mellow. The key to a happy apartment dog? Lots of exercise. Look forapartment-appropriate dogs.
In searching for the right dog, we encourage you to look beyond a breed to consider the dog himself. Personality is the most important indicator of what it will be like to live with a dog, and a mutt has it in spades.

More info about Cocker Spaniels:

Sporting Dogs: Cocker Spaniel

Sensitive and charming, the Cocker Spaniel has enjoyed widespread popularity for decades.

Cocker Spaniel

Vital Stats

Height: 14 to 15 inches at shoulder
Weight: 24 to 28 pounds
Coat: thick and wavy
Life span: 12 to 15 years
Breed Group: Sporting Dogs

The Cocker Spaniel is primarily a beloved companion dog, though he remains a capable bird dog at heart. Beautiful to look at (and labor-intensive to groom), the Cocker's amenable, cheerful disposition also makes him a treat to have in the family. Never more pleased than when he's pleasing you, he's as happy to snuggle on the couch with his favorite adults as to romp in the yard with the kids.
Additional articles you will be interested in:


The smallest member of the American Kennel Club Sporting Group, the Cocker Spaniel is the darling of many U.S. pet owners. Remember the female lead in Lady and the Tramp? It's no accident that the movie's model of an affectionate and pampered pet was a Cocker Spaniel. From the late 1930s to the 1950s, the Cocker was the number-one breed registered with the AKC. Then his popularity declined for almost 30 years, but he shot to the top of the charts again during the mid-1980s, and only in 1992 was his number-one status taken over by Labrador and Golden Retrievers. Today, the Cocker remains within the top 15 registered breeds.
And no wonder--a well-bred Cocker Spaniel is a pleasure to own. He is known for a merry, sound temperament. His flowing coat is extremely handsome, he's loving and gentle, and he wants nothing more than to make his family happy.
Compared to other dogs in the Sporting Group, the Cocker is small (20 to 30 pounds), fitting comfortably into an apartment, condo, or a small home. He is primarily a companion but is easily trained for the conformation show ring, obedience and agility competitions, and field work. He is also an excellent therapy dog.
The Cocker Spaniel resembles the Eng... [Continue to Full Overview]

Dear Labby

posts about Cocker Spaniel in the dogtimes dog blogs

Cocker Spaniel Characteristics

 Affectionate with familyAffectionate with family Dog Breed Rating
Some breeds are independent and aloof, even if they've been raised by the same person since puppyhood; others bond closely to one person and are indifferent to everyone else; and some shower the whole family with affection. Breed isn't the only factor that goes into affection levels; dogs who were raised inside a home with people around feel more comfortable with humans and bond more easily.
 Amount of sheddingAmount of shedding Dog Breed Rating
If you're going to share your home with a dog, you'll need to deal with some level of dog hair on your clothes and in your house. However, shedding does vary greatly among the breeds: Some dogs shed year-round, some "blow" seasonally -- produce a snowstorm of loose hair -- some do both, and some shed hardly at all. If you're a neatnik you'll need to either pick a low-shedding breed, or relax your standards.
 Apartment appropriateApartment appropriate Dog Breed Rating
Contrary to popular belief, small size doesn't necessarily an apartment dog make -- plenty of small dogs are too high-energy and yappy for life in a high-rise. Being quiet, low energy, fairly calm indoors, and polite with the other residents, are all good qualities in an apartment dog.
 Cold toleranceCold tolerance Dog Breed Rating
Breeds with very short coats and little or no undercoat or body fat, such as Greyhounds, are vulnerable to the cold. Dogs with a low cold tolerance need to live inside in cool climates and should have a jacket or sweater for chilly walks.
 Compatible with kidsCompatible with kids Dog Breed Rating
Being gentle with children, sturdy enough to handle the heavy-handed pets and hugs they can dish out, and having a blasé attitude toward running, screaming children are all traits that make a kid-friendly dog. You may be surprised by who's on that list: Fierce-looking Boxers are considered good with children, as are American Staffordshire Terriers (aka pit bulls). Small, delicate, and potentially snappy dogs such as Chihuahuas aren't so family-friendly.

**All dogs are individuals. Our ratings are generalizations, and they're not a guarantee of how any breed or individual dog will behave. Dogs from any breed can be good with children based on their past experiences, training on how to get along with kids, and personality. No matter what the breed or breed type, all dogs have strong jaws, sharp pointy teeth, and may bite in stressful circumstances. Young children and dogs of any breed should always be supervised by an adult and never left alone together, period.
 Dog friendlyDog friendly Dog Breed Rating
Friendliness toward dogs and friendliness toward humans are two completely different things. Some dogs may attack or try to dominate other dogs even if they're love-bugs with people; others would rather play than fight; and some will turn tail and run. Breed isn't the only factor; dogs who lived with their littermates and mother until at least 6 to 8 weeks of age, and who spent lots of time playing with other dogs during puppyhood, are more likely to havegood canine social skills.
 Drooling potentialDrooling potential Dog Breed Rating
Drool-prone dogs may drape ropes of slobber on your arm and leave big, wet spots on your clothes when they come over to say hello. If you've got a laid-back attitude toward slobber, fine; but if you're a neatnik, you may want to choose a dog that rates low in the drool department.
 Ease at being home aloneEase at being home alone Dog Breed Rating
Some breeds bond very closely with their family and are more prone to worry or even panic when left alone by their owner. An anxious dog can be very destructive, barking, whining, chewing, and otherwise causing mayhem. These breeds do best when a family member is home during the day or if you can take the dog to work.
 Ease of trainingEase of training Dog Breed Rating
Easy to train dogs are more adept at forming an association between a prompt (such as the word "sit"), an action (sitting), and a consequence (getting a treat) very quickly. Other dogs need more time, patience, and repetition during training. Many breeds are intelligent but approach training with a "What's in it for me?" attitude, in which case you'll need to use rewards and games to teach them to want to comply with your requests.
 Easy to groomEasy to groom Dog Breed Rating
Some breeds are brush-and-go dogs; others require regular bathing, clipping, and other grooming just to stay clean and healthy. Consider whether you have the time and patience for a dog that needs a lot of grooming, or the money to pay someone else to do it.
 Energy levelEnergy level Dog Breed Rating
High-energy dogs are always ready and waiting for action. Originally bred to perform a canine job of some sort, such as retrieving game for hunters or herding livestock, they have the stamina to put in a full workday. They need a significant amount of exercise and mental stimulation, and they're more likely to spend time jumping, playing, and investigating any new sights and smells. Low-energy dogs are the canine equivalent of a couch potato, content to doze the day away. When picking a breed, consider your own activity level and lifestyle, and think about whether you'll find a frisky, energetic dog invigorating or annoying.
 Friendly toward strangersFriendly toward strangers Dog Breed Rating
Stranger-friendly dogs will greet guests with a wagging tail and a nuzzle; others are shy, indifferent, or even aggressive. However, no matter what the breed, a dog who was exposed to lots of different types, ages, sizes, and shapes of people as a puppy will respond better to strangers as an adult.
 General healthGeneral health Dog Breed Rating
Due to poor breeding practices, some breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, such as hip dysplasia. This doesn't mean that every dog of that breed will develop those diseases; it just means that they're at an increased risk. If you're buying a puppy, it's a good idea to find out which genetic illnesses are common to the breed you're interested in, so you can ask the breeder about the physical health of your potential pup's parents and other relatives.
 Good for novice ownersGood for novice owners Dog Breed Rating
Some dogs are simply easier than others: they take to training better and are fairly easygoing. They're also resilient enough to bounce back from your mistakes or inconsistencies. Dogs who are highly sensitive, independent thinking, or assertive may be harder for a first-time owner to manage. You'll get your best match if you take your dog-owning experience into account as you choose your new pooch.
 Heat toleranceHeat tolerance Dog Breed Rating
Dogs with thick, double coats are more vulnerable to overheating. So are breeds with short noses, like bulldogs or pugs, since they can't pant as well to cool themselves off. If you want a heat-sensitive breed, the dog will need to stay indoors with you on warm or humid days, and you'll need to be extra cautious about exercising your dog in the heat.
 IntelligenceIntelligence Dog Breed Rating
Dogs who were bred for jobs that require decision making, intelligence, and concentration, such as herding livestock, need to exercise their brains, just as dogs who were bred to run all day need to exercise their bodies. If they don't get the mental stimulation they need, they'll make their own work -- usually with projects you won't like, such as digging and chewing. Obedience training and interactive dog toys are good ways to give a dog a brain workout, as are dog sports and careers, such as agility and search and rescue.
 MouthinessMouthiness Dog Breed Rating
Common in most breeds during puppyhood and in retriever breeds at all ages, mouthiness means a tendency to nip, chew, and play-bite (a soft, fairly painless bite that doesn't puncture the skin). Mouthy dogs are more likely to use their mouths to hold or "herd" their human family members, and they need training to learn that it's fine to gnaw on chew toys, but not on people. Mouthy breeds tend to really enjoy a game of fetch, as well as a good chew on a chew toy that's been stuffed with kibble and treats.
 Need for exerciseNeed for exercise Dog Breed Rating
Some breeds do fine with a slow evening stroll around the block. Others need daily, vigorous exercise -- especially those that were originally bred for physically demanding jobs, such as herding or hunting. Without enough exercise, these breeds may put on weight and vent their pent-up energy in ways you don't like, such as barking, chewing, and digging. Breeds that need a lot of exercise are good for outdoorsy, active people, or those interested in training their dog to compete in a high-energy dog sport, such as agility.
 PlayfulnessPlayfulness Dog Breed Rating
Some dogs are perpetual puppies -- always begging for a game -- while others are more serious and sedate. Although a playful pup sounds endearing, consider how many games of fetch or tag you want to play each day, and whether you have kids or other dogs who can stand in as playmates for the dog.
 Potential for weight gainPotential for weight gain Dog Breed Rating
Some breeds have hearty appetites and tend to put on weight easily. As in humans, being overweight can cause health problems in dogs. If you pick a breed that's prone to packing on pounds, you'll need to limit treats, make sure he gets enough exercise, and measure out his daily kibble in regular meals rather than leaving food out all the time.
 Predatory tendenciesPredatory tendencies Dog Breed Rating
Dogs that were bred to hunt, such as terriers, have an inborn desire to chase and sometimes kill other animals. Anything whizzing by -- cats, squirrels, perhaps even cars -- can trigger that instinct. Dogs that like to chase need to be leashed or kept in a fenced area when outdoors, and you'll need a high, secure fence in your yard. These breeds generally aren't a good fit for homes with smaller pets that can look like prey, such as cats, hamsters, or small dogs. Breeds that were originally used for bird hunting, on the other hand, generally won't chase, but you'll probably have a hard time getting their attention when there are birds flying by.
 SensitivitySensitivity Dog Breed Rating
Some dogs will let a stern reprimand roll off their backs, while others take even a dirty look to heart. Low-sensitivity dogs, also called "easygoing," "tolerant," "resilient," and even "thick-skinned," can better handle a noisy, chaotic household, a louder or more assertive owner, and an inconsistent or variable routine. Do you have young kids, throw lots of dinner parties, play in a garage band, or lead a hectic life? Go with a low-sensitivity dog.
 Tendency to bark or howlTendency to bark or howl Dog Breed Rating
Some breeds sound off more often than others. When choosing a breed, think about how the dog vocalizes -- with barks or howls -- and how often. If you're considering a hound, would you find their trademark howls musical or maddening? If you're considering a watchdog, will a city full of suspicious "strangers" put him on permanent alert? Will the local wildlife literally drive your dog wild? Do you live in housing with noise restrictions? Do you have neighbors nearby?
 VigorVigor Dog Breed Rating
A vigorous dog may or may not be high-energy, but everything he does, he does with vigor: he strains on the leash (until you train him not to), tries to plow through obstacles, and even eats and drinks with great big gulps. These dynamos need lots of training to learn good manners, and may not be the best fit for a home with young kids or someone who's elderly or frail. A low-vigor dog, on the other hand, has a more subdued approach to life.
 WanderlustWanderlust Dog Breed Rating
Some breeds are more free-spirited than others. Nordic dogs such as Siberian Huskies were bred to range long distances, and given the chance, they'll take off after anything that catches their interest. And many hounds simply must follow their noses, or that bunny that just ran across the path, even if it means leaving you behind.
 Watchdog abilityWatchdog ability Dog Breed Rating
A poor watchdog is likely to greet a burglar with an affectionate wag and wet kisses. A fair watchdog will bark to alert you to strange sounds or people, but doesn't look very intimidating, such as a Yorkshire Terrier. A good watchdog was originally bred for sentry duty, is large and can look intimidating, and will bark to warn you of any strange noises or people -- think German Shepherds, for instance. If you want a dog to do more than bark, you should think carefully. A good protection dog who will be safe around your friends, family, and innocent "strangers" requires extensive handling and training. And although many intruders will be discouraged by a barking dog of any breed, a determined and experienced criminal knows how to disable a guard dog -- with mace or a gun.

I just took the second test on that list. Before Buddy, a Cocker Spaniel, I had Junior, a Bearded Collie. On this test, my 2 top dog matches (with 100% perfect personality match) came out as Bearded Collie followed by Cocker Spaniel!

Congratulations! We found 17 breeds that match your search criteria exactly.

We found 22 breeds matching 90% and 42 breeds matching 80%
Please remember this is only a guide. As with people, each dog has his or her own unique personality and temperament. The breed only offers a higher probability on a given personality and temperament. Good breeders should help you match an individual puppy to your tastes in temperament.
If the breed name in the table below is a link, you can click on the name to learn more about that breed.

Here are your test results. These results show the characteristics of dogs that are suitible for you.

Experiance Level of the handlerBreeds for novice handlers only
Compatibility with ChildrenGood with Children, Good with children if raised with children, Good with older considerate children.
Size of DogSmall, Medium
Type of CoatSmooth, Short, Thick, Feathered, Wiry, Curly, Long
Level of Exercise RequiredMedium, Low
Level of GroomingHigh
Level of SheddingMedium, Low
Level of ActivityMedium, Low
Amount of Training RequiredHigh, Medium, Low
Sociability or friendliness to strangersAny will do

Found 81 breeds
100% match90% match80% match
Herding Group
Bearded Collies - Match!
Canaan Dogs - Trouble with Children
Australian Shepherds - Trouble with Experience and Exercise
Collies (Rough) - Trouble with Size and Shedding
Collies (Smooth) - Trouble with Size and Shedding
Shetland Sheepdogs - Trouble with Children and Shedding
Shiloh Shepherd (Plush) - Trouble with Experience and Size
Welsh Corgis (Cardigan) - Trouble with Children and Activity
Welsh Corgis (Pembroke) - Trouble with Children and Activity
Hound Group
Basset Hounds - Match!
Harrier - Match!
Beagles (13 Inch) - Trouble with Activity
Beagles (15 Inch) - Trouble with Activity
Ibizan Hounds - Trouble with Exercise
Irish Wolfhounds - Trouble with Size
Pharaoh Hounds - Trouble with Exercise
Whippets - Trouble with Children
Chart Polski - Trouble with Experience and Size
Dachshunds (Longhaired) - Trouble with Children and Activity
Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen - Trouble with Activity and Training
Scottish Deerhounds - Trouble with Size and Exercise
Non-Sporting Group
Boston Terriers - Match!
Bulldogs - Match!
Shiba Inu - Match!
Bichons Frises - Trouble with Activity
Keeshonden - Trouble with Shedding
Poodles (Standard) - Trouble with Size
Finnish Spitz - Trouble with Shedding and Training
French Bulldogs - Trouble with Children and Training
Lowchen - Trouble with Children and Activity
Poodles (Miniature) - Trouble with Children and Activity
Tibetan Terriers - Trouble with Children and Training
Sporting Group
Spaniels (Clumber) - Match!
Spaniels (Cocker) Ascob - Match!
Spaniels (Cocker) Black - Match!
Spaniels (Cocker) Parti-Color - Match!
Spaniels (English Cocker) - Match!
Spaniels (English Springer) - Match!
Spaniels (Welsh Springer) - Match!
Brittanys - Trouble with Exercise
Retrievers (Curly-Coated) - Trouble with Size
Retrievers (Flat-Coated) - Trouble with Size
Retrievers (Golden) - Trouble with Size
Retrievers (Labrador) - Trouble with Size
Spaniels (American Water) - Trouble with Children
Spaniels (Field) - Trouble with Activity
Spaniels (Sussex) - Trouble with Training
Retrievers (Chesapeake Bay) - Trouble with Experience and Size
Setters (English) - Trouble with Size and Exercise
Setters (Gordon) - Trouble with Size and Exercise
Wirehaired Pointing Griffons - Trouble with Exercise and Activity
Terrier Group
Border Terriers - Match!
Soft-Coated Wheaten Terriers - Match!
Irish Terriers - Trouble with Training
Australian Terriers - Trouble with Children and Size
Bedlington Terriers - Trouble with Children and Training
Dandie Dinmont Terriers - Trouble with Children and Training
Manchester Terriers (Standard) - Trouble with Children and Activity
Miniature Schnauzers - Trouble with Children and Activity
Scottish Terriers - Trouble with Children and Training
Sealyham Terriers - Trouble with Children and Training
Skye Terriers - Trouble with Children and Training
West Highland White Terriers - Trouble with Children and Activity
Toy Group
Pugs - Match!
English Toy Spaniels (B & P C) - Trouble with Children and Size
English Toy Spaniels (K C & R) - Trouble with Children and Size
Havanese - Trouble with Size and Activity
Italian Greyhounds - Trouble with Experience and Children
Japanese Chin - Trouble with Children and Size
Papillons - Trouble with Children and Size
Shih Tzu - Trouble with Children and Size
Working Group
Portuguese Water Dogs - Match!
Bernese Mountain Dogs - Trouble with Size
Great Danes - Trouble with Size
Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs - Trouble with Size
Akitas - Trouble with Experience and Size
Boxers - Trouble with Size and Training
Mastiffs - Trouble with Experience and Size
Newfoundlands - Trouble with Size and Shedding
Rottweilers - Trouble with Experience and Size
Standard Schnauzers - Trouble with Experience and Children

I'm adding all these links and stuff for my own reference, because I need a way to find these links again, but you can go ahead and check them out if you want to find out more about service dogs.

Autism Support Dogs

Trainable Tasks[2]
Major Depression
Tactile Stimulation

Wake-up handler

Feelings of isolation
Cuddle and Kiss


Deep Pressure Stimulation
Lick Tears
Bring Tissues
Initiate Play

Suicidal ideation

Stay with and focus on handler

Psychomotor retardation
Walk on a leash

Memory loss
Remind to take medication
Help to find keys or telephone

Assist with daily routines in the home
Bipolar  (Manic phase)
Thoughts racing

Tactile Stimulation

Hyper focus
Hyper locomotion
Olfactory cue?

Alert to incipient manic episode

Aggressive driving
Alert to aggressive driving

Alert to insomnia

Memory loss
Remind to take medication
Help to find keys or telephone

Assist with daily routines in the home

Tactile Stimulation

Olfactory cue?
Alert to incipient anxiety or panic attack

Fight or Flight response

Lead handler to a safe place

Pounding heart

Staying with and focusing on handler

Brace or lean against the handler

Lay across handler’s body

Memory loss
Remind to take medication
Help to find keys or telephone


Tactile Stimulation

Sleep disturbance
Staying with and focusing on handler

Assist handler to leave situation

Muscle tension
Walk on leash

Memory loss
Remind to take medication
Fear of what could happen

Tactile Stimulation

Fear of being vulnerable

Staying with and focusing on handler

Fear of leaving home
Assist handler to leave the house
Social Phobia
Tactile Stimulation

Nervousness around others
Facilitate social interactions

Staying with and focusing on handler

Feeling overwhelmed
Assist handler in leaving a social situation
Post Traumatic Stress
Intrusive imagery

Tactile Stimulation

Hallucination Discernment

Feelings of isolation
Cuddle and Kiss

Alert to presence of other people

Startle response

Environmental Assessment


Turn on lights and safety check a room

Avoidance behaviors

Staying with and focusing on handler

Interrupt by Waking-up handler
Turn on lights for calming & reorienting
Turn off lights for resuming sleep

Feelings of being threatened
Create safe personal space
Obsessive Compulsive
Intrusive thoughts or images

Tactile Stimulation

Repetitive or compulsive behavior

Memory loss
Remind to take medication
Help to find keys or telephone

Dissociative Identity

Tactile Stimulation

Startle response
Threat Assessment

Olfactory or behavioral cue?
Alert to incipient dissociative episode



Hallucination Discernment

Wake-up handler

Forgotten personal identity
Carry handler identification documents

Staying with and focusing on handler

Dissociative fugue
Help handler to cross streets safely
Flat affect
Tactile Stimulation

Hallucination Discernment

Catatonic behavior
Disorganized speech or behavior

Staying with and focusing on handler

Forgotten personal identity
Carry handler identification documents

Confusion or disorientation
Take handler home

Social withdrawal
Facilitate social interactions

Feeling overwhelmed
Buffer handler in crowded situations

Memory loss
Remind to take medication
Help to find keys or telephone

[1]  Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-IV (1994) 4th edition American Psychiatric Association,
[2]  Service Dogs Invisible Disabilities’ (1997-2003) listserv members’ input.

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