We have a service dog ( 27 lb Cocker Spaniel ). Really you only need a large dog as an SD if you have mobility problems and need assistance with balance, etc ... for other situations Smaller dogs are perfectly fine and sometimes easier to manage than the larger dogs ... we don't have any problems with the larger dogs, love all kinds of dogs ... for us, the fact we live in an apartment and with all the areas we take our SD a smaller dog was more appropriate for us.
Our dog is a multipurpose animal ... Service Dog/Hearing Dog and Psychiatric Service Dog. Because the waiting list for a program trained dog was 2 to 3 years in our area and the criterion for qualifying for an animal from one of the organizations was difficult to meet we chose to train our own dog and then take them to be qualified by the ISSDA ( International Service and Support Dog Association ). There is no rule/law that says the animal must be trained by designated professionals, they just have to meet certain standards and must be required to provide support outside of the home to be eligable for universal access in public places. There are many tasks that a PSD can perform for their owner when out in public ... assisting in calming, keeping someone prone to dissociation focused and present, leading their owner to a place to sit down, leading to an exit, and many more tasks that would qualify the dog for public access.
If you'd like more specific information, let us know and we'd be glad to share what knowledge and experience we have with you.
Take care, be safe and well: Hivin
Originally Posted by deb1956
I am currently out on workman's comp due to a traumatic situation at work. I also have a history of multiple traumas, however, my symptoms are rarely full blown panick attacks. Instead I have ongoing anxiety r/t situations I only partially understand. When I am in the periods of time when these things happen, I tend to dissociate, but not to the point of freezing. Instead I become agorophobic. I tend to fall due to my impulsivity when I am anxious. I will probably go back to work part time someday. A friend raises pomeranians, and offered me one as a service dog, because it is not good for show. I am not generally afraid of strangers in most situations but I am particularly anxious with authority figures and people that try to become emotionally close too quickly. I have experience suicidal thoughts at times when I dissociate. What could a pomeranian be trained to do to help in these situations? I don't want a big dog.