Draft Canadian General Standards Board (CGSB) Service Dog Standard

DISCLAIMER:

Please note that the following version of the Canadian General Standards Board (CGSB) draft service dog standard and its three annexes is “text only” and cannot be considered complete. Nested indents have been lost, charts originally included have been deleted as their formatting was lost, and some references to charts and notes have also been deleted.

Despite the deletions noted above, we believe that the scope and intent of the draft standard remain. It was on this version of the document that individuals, agencies and organizations based their responses as posted elsewhere on this blog.

Comments and submissions regarding this version of the draft standard were accepted by the CGSB up until July 14, 2017. The commenting period is now closed. However, we encourage you to join the discussion/mailing list, as strategy development for a community response is ongoing in advance of the CGSB committee’s next meeting in late September.

National Standard of Canada

CAN/CGSB-193.1-2017

Introduction

Context

For centuries dogs have worked in partnership with humans in many different ways: as companions, hunting, herding and protecting our livestock, and more recently they have assisted us in times of war, as members of the police, and to help people with disabilities improve their quality of life.

In 1929, the first formal program in North America to be introduced was by The Seeing Eye, Inc. and the first guide dogs in Canada were placed by the MIRA Foundation in 1981. With advances in accessibility and training, dogs have been recognized as service dogs helping people with a variety of disabilities, such as hearing impairment, mobility assistance, diabetes, autism, and mental health issues, including but not limited to post-traumatic stress. In recent decades, service dogs have been specifically trained to assist veterans with operational stress injuries. 

Within Canada, there are many organizations and individuals training and matching service dog teams. Certain dog trainers are affiliated with membership-based organizations that abide by formulated industry standards, while others acquire their training online through numerous sources or simply work independently.

Standardization of the service dog team will protect the public, the user and service dogs.

The need for this Standard arose due to long waiting lists for service dogs and a growing concern that those training the dogs may not have any formal education or experience working with persons with disabilities or their families. These gaps and weaknesses prompted many people to train their own dogs either with, or without, the assistance of a dog trainer. Further, some people began using online resources to purchase corresponding ID cards and dog vests, even though there is no way to determine if the team is authentic or safe to work together in public spaces. For these reasons it is extremely difficult for service dog teams to establish their legitimacy within this turbulent environment.

Objectives

This National Standard of Canada for service dog teams, was developed to provide a benchmark for the performance of a service dog team. These performance requirements assure the legitimacy and efficacy of both the person with a disability, the service dog and secondary handlers (as required) to form a service dog team that can work safely in public spaces. This National Standard also contains information that outlines best practices for the handling and training of a service dog. While a service dog does mitigate a disability, its sentient nature deems that there are additional legal and moral responsibilities of those training and working with these dogs to adhere to best practices in the development and maintenance above that of an inanimate tool used for disability mitigation.

National Standards of Canada 

National Standards of Canada are developed through a multi-stakeholder consensus-based consultative approach that seeks to avoid conflict of interest, thereby, strengthening the credibility of the document. National Standards are voluntary, however, they can be referenced in Canadian legislation and corresponding regulations for the purpose of continuity and accuracy validating their significance. Conformance to a published National Standard referenced in regulation can be verified by independent certification programs. To ensure the relevance and efficiency of National Standards they are reviewed cyclically and can also be revised as required.

1 Scope

1.1 This National Standard of Canada applies to service dog teams that access public spaces.

1.2 This Standard does not preclude or override any applicable regulatory or legal requirements. Rather, it may be referenced as a benchmark to support commonality of regulations/legislation for service dog teams across Canada.

1.3 This Standard is intended to provide guidance and establish best practices for:

• Service dog teams

• The welfare of the service dog

• The welfare of the handler

• Safe public access for service dog teams

• Persons with a disability wishing to train their own service dog

1.4 This Standard is intended for use primarily by:

• Regulators

• Third party conformance assessment bodies

• Providers of programs supporting service dog teams

• Individuals and organizations that train humans and dogs to work together as service dog teams

• Handlers of service dogs

• Those responsible for oversight of service dog teams

• Health professionals who interact with service dog teams

• Assessors who indicate which person with a disability would benefit from the use of a service dog

1.5 This Standard will be of interest to: 

• Those responsible for public and/or private spaces in which service dog teams have to be accommodated under applicable federal/provincial/territorial/municipal regulations, standards or legislation (including, but not limited to schools, hospitals, retail establishments, transportation terminals, apartment units, condo buildings, etc.)

• Those who provide services to the public (including, but not limited to, transportation service providers, financial institutions, hotels, restaurants, etc.) in which service dog teams have to be accommodated under applicable federal/provincial/territorial/municipal standards or legislation

• Businesses, agencies and organizations that employ persons supported by a service dog

• Federal/provincial/territorial/municipal governments and agencies

• Service dog teams and their peer organization (peer support)

• Support persons or family members of service dog users

• Sponsors or funders of service dog teams

• Educational facilities instructing persons to become service dog trainers

• Organizations promoting inclusion, accessibility and accommodation

• Those providing fact-based public education regarding service dogs

1.6 Any individual or organization (including, but not limited to the handler, training organization, third party conformance assessor, etc.) intending to use this Standard shall take responsible measures to ensure adherence of the service dog team to this Standard, ongoing conformance to this Standard and compliance with all applicable legislation.

2 Normative references 

The following normative documents contain provisions that, through reference in this text, constitute provisions of this National Standard of Canada. The referenced documents may be obtained from the sources noted below.

Note: The addresses provided below were valid at the date of publication of this standard. 

An undated reference is to the latest edition or revision of the reference or document in question, unless otherwise specified by the authority applying this standard. A dated reference is to the specified revision or edition of the reference or document in question.

2.1 International Organization for Standardization

• ISO 11784—Radio frequency identification of animals—Code structure

• ISO 11785—Radio frequency identification of animals—Technical concept

2.1.1 Source 

The above may be obtained from IHS Markit, 200-1331 MacLeod Trail SE, Calgary, Alberta T2G 0K3, telephone 613-237-4250 or 1-800-267-8220, fax 613-237-4251, 

3 Terms and definitions 

For the purposes of this National Standard of Canada, the following terms and definitions apply.

3.1 alternate handler

person who replaces the substitute handler in specific, protected environments such as schools.

3.2 assessor

independent person who evaluates an individual seeking to become a handler, to determine if the individual 1) is appropriate to be paired with a service dog, 2) has the capacity to manage a service dog in public, and 3) has the resources to look after the service dog.

3.3 complex teams

constituted by an individual who has a disability (user) that is mitigated by the service dog, a service dog and a substitute handler who is capable of meeting the requirements of this Standard.

 Note: The combination of user, service dog and substitute handler together meet all requirements of a simple team.

3.4 disability

any previous or existing mental or physical disability, including disfigurement, and previous or existing dependence on alcohol or a drug.

3.5 emotional support dog

companion dog that may not have any specialized training, but provides comfort and support to a person. Sometimes referred to as a comfort animal.

3.6 facility dog

specially trained dog that is working with a volunteer or professional. The work of a facility dog may include visitations or professional therapy in one or more locations. 

Note: Public access is permitted only when the dog and the handler, who is a trained volunteer or professional, is directly working with a client with a disability.

3.7 handler

person who has care and control of the service dog. The person who requires the dog may not always be the handler.

3.8 person with a disability

individuals who have long‐term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments which in interaction with various barriers may hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.

3.9 public access

right of a person with a disability to be accompanied by a service dog in public spaces. Public access is given to the individual with the disability and not to the service dog alone.

3.10 public space

space or gathering place that is generally open to people, promoting social interaction and a sense of community. Examples of public spaces may include, but are not limited to buildings (malls or plazas, convention centres, accommodations, schools, hospitals or other medical facilities, restaurants or cafes, or theatres), places of worship, recreational facilities, public transportation, outdoor facilities (beaches, parks, town squares, amusement parks, or golf courses) or private spaces where service dog accommodations are required under applicable legislation.

3.11 qualified practitioner

licensed medical professional who practices in the jurisdiction where the person with a disability resides, and has the authority to indicate that a person has a disability.

3.12 service dog

dog specifically trained to minimize limitations of a person with a disability. Service dogs may also commonly be referred to as assistance dogs.

 Note: Includes, but not limited to: guide, mobility, medical alert, medical response, hearing, psychiatric, autism, Post-traumatic Stress. Does not include: therapy, emotional support, companion, facility, comfort dogs.

3.13 service dog team

working combination of a specific user and/or handler and the service dog.

3.14 simple teams

one handler with a disability paired with one service dog.

3.15 substitute handler

person who manages the service dog when the person with a disability is a user, and the service dog team is in a public space.

3.16 support person

individual without a disability that assists the service dog handler with tasks associated with care and maintenance of the service dog.

3.17 task(s)

various skills that the service dog has acquired through training and includes specific actions, guiding, alerts, detection, and other activities.

3.18 therapy dog

personal pets who offer support and companionship to individuals or groups of individuals in long-term care facilities, hospitals, or even in schools.

Typically, the dog has to pass a temperament test, and then the owner has to show that they can properly handle their dog in a variety of situations.

3.19 user

a person with a disability who cannot independently meet the requirements of this Standard, and is part of a service dog team when accompanied by a substitute handler who manages the service dog (see clause 6—Complex teams).

Part I—Simple service dog teams 

A simple service dog team is comprised of a person with disability (handler) and a service dog. The person with disability has a disability that is relatively permanent and stable and can independently comply with all of the requirements related to the human (that is handler).  

4 General requirements

4.1 Handler

4.1.1 Handler suitability requirements

4.1.1.1 Determination of disability, need and readiness for a service dog

4.1.1.1.1 Verification of disability

It shall be confirmed that, under the jurisdiction’s statutes for persons with a disability, the handler has a disability.

4.1.1.1.2 Need for a service dog and ability to manage

The handler shall have a review of their disability and an assessment of their need for a service dog. An independent assessor having knowledge of the use of service dogs and with competence in the area of handler’s disability shall complete this assessment. If the assessor determines that there is a need for a service dog, a report of assessment shall be issued.

The report of assessment shall provide the results of the assessment, including, but not limited to the following:

• Need for a service dog: Determination that the handler has the desire for increased independence or to improve or maintain their quality of life or any combination thereof as a result of using the service dog. Additionally, in the assessor’s opinion, the individual tasks a service dog may perform that will mitigate the symptoms of the handler’s disability

• Ability to safely and responsibly manage the service dog: The prospective handler’s ability to safely and responsibly manage the service dog shall take into account any factors that are associated with their disability

4.1.2 Handler’s canine husbandry knowledge and application

4.1.2.1 Abilities and limitations of the service dog

The handler shall have reasonable expectations of the service dog according to the scope of the acquired skills, behaviours and abilities of their service dog.

4.1.2.2 Canine first aid knowledge

The handler shall know the signs of, steps to take and what materials to use/improvise to respond to situations that require first aid for their service dog. The handler shall have an emergency action plan detailing how they will address various situations ranging from minor first aid performed by the handler or a support person, to immediate attention by a veterinarian.

4.1.2.3 General service dog knowledge 

The handler shall have knowledge of the responsibilities of a service dog team. These responsibilities include laws and guidance documents that pertain to service dogs in the handler’s jurisdiction, handling best practices in public and how to negotiate situations where the rights of other members of the public may overlap with the rights of the handler and the service dog team.

4.1.2.4 Veterinary care

The handler shall provide the service dog with all needed veterinary care including emergency care, maintenance care, preventative care, rapid diagnosis and treatment. This includes at minimum an annual check-up that also addresses weight management.

4.1.2.5 Physical needs of the service dog

The handler shall ensure the provision of the physical needs of the service dog.

4.1.2.6 Non-physical needs of the service dog 

The handler shall ensure the provision of the non-physical needs of the service dog, tailored to the service dog’s behaviours, abilities and limitations.

4.1.2.7 Recognition of stress/fear/anxiety signs

The handler shall be able to recognize signs of stress/fear/anxiety in their service dog. 

 Note: Signs compatible with stress, fear or anxiety may also occur with certain medical conditions. For example, panting may be associated with stress/fear/anxiety, but can also be associated with medical conditions (heat stroke, fever, Cushing’s disease etc.).

4.1.2.8 Record keeping

The handler shall maintain records of veterinary care or indicate where records are kept, and shall have an alternate plan of care for when the handler is unable or incapable of providing for the physical and non-physical needs of the service dog.

4.1.3 Handler’s knowledge and application of humane training

The handler shall apply humane care, training and treatment that address the individual needs of the service dog.

4.2 Service dogs

4.2.1 Service dog attributes

In order to be an effective team member and to be safe to work in public, the service dog shall be:

• Mature

• In good health

• Neutered

• Categorized according to size

• An acceptable breed 

• Of calm temperament

• Be outfitted with appropriate equipment and permanent identification

4.2.2 Service dog obedience skills

A service dog shall possess exceptional obedience skills. The service dog shall be able to respond promptly upon cue while on or off leash, under all conditions.

4.2.3 Service dog behaviour in public spaces

A service dog shall be able to behave safely in public.

4.3 Service dog team

4.3.1 Team fit 

A service dog and its handler shall be compatible with each other’s needs.

4.3.2 Team bonding—Handler and service dog

The service dog and the handler shall have a working bond.

4.3.3 Team—Mitigation of handler disability

The service dog shall have acquired individual tasks that mitigate the disability of the handler.

Note 1: Substantial special training is normally required to achieve proficiency.

4.3.4 Team performance in public

The service dog team shall be able to operate safely at all times while in public and shall integrate readily into public spaces, being unobtrusive and capable of mitigating hazards encountered.

5 Detailed requirements

5.1 Handler

5.1.1 Handler suitability requirements

5.1.1.1 Determination of handler’s disability

Any one of the following qualifications shall be used to determine the handler has a disability:

• Signed statement from a qualified practitioner that the person has a disability that may be mitigated through having a service dog

• Receipt of a Canada Pension Plan disability benefit

• Enrollment in a provincial/territorial legislated disability support program

• Entitlement to the Disability Tax Credit allowed by the Canadian Revenue Agency

5.1.1.2 Need and readiness for a service dog

The handler shall have the capacity to meet

Category A requirements below. The report of assessment shall indicate how Category B requirements are met either by the handler or by the handler with the assistance of a designated support person.

5.1.1.3 Category A requirements

• Stability of disability (in that the variability does not pose a risk to the safety of the service dog, the handler or the public)

• Be free of any symptoms that may interfere with the safe handling of the service dog at home or in public

• Ability to react to frustrating situations without engaging in behaviour that may cause the service dog fear, distress, pain or anxiety

• Ability to handle the service dog in a manner that does not cause the public to fear for the safety of themselves, the handler or the service dog

• Ability to handle the service dog independently

• Willingness to utilize the service dog in the performance of tasks

• Access to required resources to maintain the service dog’s ongoing health and behavioural well-being

• Ability to recognize when outside assistance is needed and engage with it

• Ability to recognize and avoid unsafe situations

• Ability to recognize and respect situations where it is necessary to maintain a sterile environment, such as sterile units in health care facilities

• Remember and adhere to requirements of public access (see

5.1.1.3 (Note below)

• Understand the limitations of the service dog

• Sufficient work to maintain the service dog’s tasks and obedience

• Ability to treat the service dog with appreciation and respect

• Ability to create and maintain a positive bond with the service dog

• Recognize and act upon the service dog’s cues indicating the needs of their service dog

• Understand the implications of heightened visibility and ability to develop strategies to address this

• Appropriately manage contact with strangers in public in a manner that does not endanger the safety of the public or the service dog team

• Ability to manage unexpected aspects of service dog care and handling in all conditions.

Note: There are three aspects pertaining to public access for service dog teams:

1. Access for a service dog team is to the same public spaces as any citizen, with very few exceptions, such as not allowing the service dog in food preparation areas (kitchens and meat plants are examples)

2. The service dog team can be denied access for inappropriate behaviour

3. Facilities have an obligation to accommodate, but only to the point of undue hardship

5.1.1.4 Category B requirements

• Ability to provide exercise at a rate and duration recommended by the service dog’s attending veterinarian or training organization/legal entity’s assessor

• Ability to provide grooming at a rate and method (according to coat type, size and working environment) recommended by the service dog’s attending veterinarian or training organization/legal entity’s assessor

• Ability to provide a positive home environment

• Ability to provide ready access to fresh water

• Ability to provide the service dog with the type of food and quantity recommended by the service dog’s attending veterinarian or training organization/legal entity’s assessor that maintains the service dog’s health, ideal weight and vigor

• Ability to ensure the service dog’s waste is promptly disposed of to ensure a clean environment, in both public and private

• Ability to secure and adjust the service dog’s working equipment including, but not limited to, collar, leash, vest and/or harness

• Ability to provide for basic first aid to the service dog

• Resources to provide the service dog with veterinary care including, but not limited to, emergency, regular and preventative care

• Ability to engage in problem solving in a manner that does not cause the service dog fear, distress, pain or anxiety

• Commitment to engage in canine behaviour modification/maintenance in a manner that does not cause the service dog fear, distress, pain or anxiety

5.1.2 Handler’s canine care knowledge and application

5.1.2.1 Abilities and limitations of the service dog

 The handler’s expectations for acquired skills, behaviours and abilities of their service dog shall encompass: 

• Abilities and limitations of the service dog in performing tasks and behaviours that have been previously acquired

• Abilities and limitations of the service dog in learning new activities or performing previously acquired tasks and behaviours in new situations

• How the nature of a service dog determines the consistency of behaviour performance

• How the physical and structural attributes of the service dog determines its ability to perform required behaviours

• How the temperament of the service dog determines its ability to perform required behaviours

• How the emotional and physical maturity of the service dog determines its ability to consistently perform required behaviours over time

• Ability to recognize when the service dog is unable or unwilling to perform required behaviours and how that affects the ability of the handler to use the service dog

5.1.2.2 Canine first aid knowledge

The handler shall have knowledge of how to respond to canine first aid and emergency situations, and include in the emergency action plan examples of how to deal with situations that are not limited to:

• Cuts, punctures, contusions and abrasions

• Ingesting a hazardous substance

• Dehydration

• Heat stroke, heat exhaustion, hypothermia

• Chemical/thermal burns or frost bite

• Broken bones

• Choking

• Bloat

• Vomiting or diarrhea

• Seizures

• Situations requiring Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)

• Abnormal vital signs such as heart rate, breathing or circulation

5.1.2.3 Detailed service dog knowledge

In addition to general knowledge, the service dog handler shall have specific knowledge in the following areas: 

• How to handle a service dog in public as to limit or eliminate intrusive behaviour

• Respectful etiquette that minimizes public disruption while in a variety of public settings including, but not limited to, restaurants, taxis, buses, airplanes, grocery stores, public events, attractions, shopping malls and elevators

• The handler’s role in public relations for the service dog community and how to manage interactions with the public in a positive manner

• All applicable laws pertaining to service dogs in the province and municipality where they reside and travel

• Standards, regulations and/or guidelines for the carriage of service dogs for the modes of transportation they use

• Understanding of access rights, including but not limited to:

1. Situations where accommodation of the team would cause undue hardship (such as disruptions to the operations or to the inhabitants human or animal),

Note: It may be possible to make prior arrangements to be accompanied by a person with knowledge of areas to be avoided

2. If the service dog is demonstrating out of control behaviour

3. If a service dog displays aggressive behaviour

4. If the handler is engaging in abusive or disruptive behaviour

• How to mediate issues that may arise when the rights of the service dog team and the rights of other members of the public overlap (such as allergy disabilities)

• How to behave around other working dogs in public

5.1.2.4 Veterinary care

The handler shall ensure the service dog is up to date on the core vaccinations (as detailed by the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association) or equivalent medical tests, to ensure immunity. The need for non-core vaccinations/ documented immunity and prevention of parasites shall be based on the veterinarian’s assessment of risk and/or presence of parasites such as external parasites (fleas, mites and ticks) and internal parasites (heartworm and gastrointestinal). 

As the service dog ages, the handler shall ensure the service dog is screened for age related problems such as orthopaedic conditions, degeneration of sight and dental deterioration.

5.1.2.5 Physical needs of the service dog 

The handler shall provide for the physical needs of the service dog, including, but not limited to: 

• Access to fresh water

• Appropriate food, including type, quantity and rate of feeding (as recommended by attending veterinarian or training organization/legal entity’s assessor)

• Grooming requirements to ensure comfort and cleanliness (as recommended by attending veterinarian or training organization/legal entity’s assessor)

• Suitable exercise (as recommended by attending veterinarian or training organization/legal entity’s assessor)

• Clean area for elimination and prompt removal of waste

• A safe and secure home environment

• Access to a comfortable rest area

• Safe method of transportation including restraints, when appropriate, to reduce the severity of injuries to the service dog, handler, and other occupants in the event of an accident

• An alternate plan of care that provides for the physical needs of the service dog when the handler is incapable or unable

5.1.2.6 Non-physical needs of the service dog

The handler shall provide for the non-physical needs of the service dog, tailored to the service dog’s behaviours, abilities and limitations that include, but are not limited to:

• Respectful, appreciative communication with the service dog

• Access to a quiet area for rest and relaxation

• Opportunities to engage in rest and relaxation during non-working times

• Playful stimulation based on the preference of the service dog which may include:

1. Games/play with the handler

2. Games/play with other animals

3. Solitary games/play 

5.1.2.7 Recognition of stress, fear and anxiety signs

The handler shall be able to recognize situations where stress/fear/anxiety signs require mitigation actions and what those actions are for their service

dog. The handler shall also indicate the steps to take to avoid situations that might cause the service dog stress/fear/anxiety.

Note: Signs compatible with stress, fear or anxiety may also occur with certain medical conditions. For example, panting may be associated with stress/fear/anxiety, but can also be associated with medical conditions (heat stroke, fever, Cushing’s disease etc.). 

5.1.2.8 Record keeping

The handler shall maintain records or be able to indicate where records are kept for their service dog.

5.1.2.8.1 Veterinary records

Veterinary records shall include: 

• Primary veterinarian contact information

• Local emergency veterinarian contact information

• Maintenance veterinary visits

• Preventative care schedule

• Vaccinations/proof of immunity

• An alternate plan of care to provide for the physical needs of the service dog should the handler be unable/incapable

5.1.2.8.2 Ownership and proxy records 

Ownership and proxy records shall include:

• Name and contact information for the legal owner of the service dog if different from the handler

• Name and contact information of the person designated to make decisions regarding emergency care of the service dog should the handler be unable/deemed not capable 

It is recommended that the following information be readily available:

• Contact information for the professional used in situations where professional assistance with service dog behaviour is needed

• Records of vaccination/immunity testing

• Physical needs of the service dog

• Provision of food type, quantity and rate

• Grooming

• Exercise

• Skills and ability acquisition and maintenance

• Humane training methods and use

• Problem behaviours and the humane training plan in place to address these behaviours

 Note: The person caring for the dog and the person making decisions might not be the same person.

5.1.3 Handler’s knowledge and application of humane training

The handler shall, as a minimum:

• Have an understanding of and commitment to the dog’s primary welfare needs as laid out in the Five Freedoms

• Have an understanding of the Humane Hierarchy and commitment to use only the ideal and acceptable methods of the Humane Hierarchy

• Commit to not using any technique or equipment that would cause the dog fear, distress, pain or anxiety, including equipment that delivers electric shock, utilizes prongs or points or restricts/slips tighter than 90% of the circumference of the dog’s neck

5.2 Service dogs

5.2.1 Service dog attributes

5.2.1.1 Appropriate equipment

The service dog’s equipment shall: 

• Clearly identify it as part of a service dog team

• Be suited for the work the service dog is performing

• Be sized correctly for the service dog

• Not cause immediate or chronic stress/fear/anxiety/harm to the service dog

• Conform to all relevant bylaws regarding leashes/collars/identification

• Not cause a risk to the safety of the service dog

• Not cause a risk to the safety of the public

• Not deliver electrical stimulation nor aversive stimulus to the service dog

• Not have any prongs/points

• Not be able to restrict/slip tighter than 90% of the circumference of the service dog’s neck

• Not muzzle the service dog

5.2.1.2 Maturity

The service dog shall be a minimum of 14 months old to be part of a service dog team. The service dog shall possess the physical and mental maturity to perform the work that is needed.

5.2.1.3 Good heath

The service dog shall be in good health, including, but not limited to:

• Physical soundness, free of injury or disease

• Structure that is required for the service dog’s work

• Stamina required for the average working day

• Healthy weight for the service dog’s breed(s)

• Possess a coat that is clean and free of mats, debris, and parasites

• Possess skin/paws that are healthy and free of open wounds/sores

• Possess eyes that are free of genetic or injury obstructions

• Possess joints (including hips, elbows and knees) that move freely and cause the service dog no pain or discomfort

• Be free of communicable diseases

• Be up to date on vaccinations/immunity testing as recommended by the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association and in accordance with the laws where the service dog resides and regularly travels

• Possess no health ailments that would cause the service dog pain or discomfort or ailments that working as a service dog would exacerbate or put the public at risk

The service dog shall be free of any health concerns that may cause them immediate or chronic stress/fear/anxiety/discomfort, interfere with their ability to work or pose a risk to the public (either directly, zoonosis or as acting out due to pain/discomfort).

5.2.1.4 Neutered

A female service dog shall be spayed (ovariohysterectomy) and a male service dog shall be castrated (bilateral orchiectomy). 

5.2.1.5 Permanent identification

The service dog shall have an operating microchip that is a Full Duplex type conforming to ISO 11784 and ISO 11785.

5.2.1.6 Size classification

The size of a service dog may impact its ability to be accommodated in certain public settings. 

5.2.1.7 Acceptable breed

A service dog’s breed shall conform to local legislation and legislation of locations where the service dog team travels. 

5.2.1.8 Temperament

A service dog shall have a temperament that does not pose a risk to the handler, the public, the service dog or elements present in the public environment.

This temperament includes, but is not limited to:

• Non-aggressive to humans, dogs, cats/small animals and beings in the locations expected to be frequented

• Non-food aggressive

• Low chase behaviour/absence of predatory aggression

• Non-disruptive responses to disruptive visual, auditory, tactile and olfactory (smell) stimuli

• Non-destructive to the environment

• Manageable energy level 

5.2.2 Service dog obedience skills

The service dog shall be able to respond promptly upon cue while on or off leash, in private and public settings, to cues that include but are not limited to:

• Sit

• Down

• Sit or down stay with distractions

• Recall with distractions

• Stay with handler at a distance

• Leave it

• Heel through a crowd with distractions

 Note 1: Distractions shall include, but are not limited to visual, auditory, olfactory (smell), sensory, toy, food, animal/cat and people.

Note 2: Intelligent disobedience: There may be a need for intelligent disobedience on occasion where the service dog will not respond to a cue in order to protect the handler from an unsafe situation. An example is a guide dog that does not move forward on command due to its recognition of a situation that is dangerous at the moment, such as an oncoming cyclist or moving vehicle. When the danger clears, the service dog will then move forward.

5.2.3 Service dog behaviour in public spaces

 A service dog shall be able to behave as follows when in public.

5.2.3.1 Absence of aggression, excessive fear or excessive shyness

 The service dog shall never display aggression in public (or behaviours the public may interpret as aggression), excessive fear or excessive shyness.

5.2.3.2 Urination/defecation

 The service dog shall not urinate or defecate in inappropriate locations such as private property or in non-indicated areas.

5.2.3.3 Separation from the handler

The service dog shall tolerate being separated and removed from its handler when circumstances warrant.

5.3 Service dog team

5.3.1 Team compatibility—Physical and behavioural compatibility

5.3.2 Team bonding—Handler and service dog

A working bond between the service dog and the handler shall be evident through service dog – handler interaction. This bond with the service dog is to demonstrate a secure attachment with the handler.

5.3.3 Team—Mitigation of handler disability

The service dog’s acquired individual tasks include, but are not limited to tasks, guiding, alerts or detection. Any task shall exclude an aggressive behaviour

These tasks shall be demonstrated to occur reliably and promptly when cued

At least one task shall mitigate the disability in a public setting.

Note 1: Blocking is not considered to be an aggression behaviour.

5.3.4 Team performance in public

5.3.4.1 Safe to the public

The service dog shall remain under the handler’s verbal or visual control at all times, including situations appropriate to the handler and their disability.

These situations may include:

• The service dog to be off leash

• The service dog to stay while at a distance from the handler

• The service dog to recall when at a distance from the handler

• The service dog to halt on recall at a distance from the handler

5.3.4.2 Unobtrusive

The service dog shall be handled in a manner that the service dog is unobtrusive to other members of the public.

Situations requiring unobtrusive behaviour include, but are not limited to:

• When the handler is stopped or sitting so the service dog is out of the path of traffic

• The service dog matching pace and remaining close to the handler

• Manoeuvring in tight spaces

• Entering, riding and exiting public transportation

• Not eating food in public

• Not engaging in annoying or disruptive non-alert vocalizations

5.3.4.3 Safe from the public or environmental or structural hazards

At all times while in the execution of their duties, the service dog handler shall endeavour to keep their service dog safe from hazards.

 5.3.4.3.1 Human hazards

 The handler shall endeavour to protect their service dog from members of the public who intentionally or unintentionally would cause undue stress/fear/anxiety or harm to their service dog. The handler shall be able to protect their service dog in a manner that does not create a risk to the safety of other members of the public or to themselves.

 The handler shall endeavour to respond to members of the public who intentionally or unintentionally would cause undue stress/fear/anxiety or harm to their service dog. The handler shall have a plan to safeguard their service dog in a manner that does not create a risk to the safety of other members of the public or to themselves. The plan will be suitable to the handler and the service dog and could include items such as obtaining assistance.

5.3.4.3.2 Environmental hazards

The handler shall endeavour to protect their service dog from environmental hazards that exist in public spaces as well as in private spaces such as the home. These hazards include, but are not limited to: pet dogs, hot pavement, winter conditions, spilled hazardous materials, or broken glass. The handler shall be able to proactively identify and take steps to avoid environmental hazards that may pose a risk to the safety of their service dog in public.

In situations where these hazards are unavoidable, the handler shall either take steps to minimize the hazard (such as putting boots on the dog) or navigate the situation in a manner to proactively minimize risk to their service dog. 

5.3.4.3.3 Attacking dogs 

The handler shall endeavour to avoid any dog that is not under the control of a human whether the dog is leashed or not. Action includes but is not limited to crossing the street, body blocking or asking for the dog in question to be restrained. The handler will familiarize himself or herself with the safest way to intervene or to escape in the case of an attacking dog while avoiding danger. 

5.3.4.3.4 Structural hazards

Places where moving objects normally exist, such as public transit platforms or roads with vehicles require the handler to take precautions to not put their service dog in harm’s way. The handler shall have heightened awareness and endeavour to exercise due caution to keep their service dog in a safe position consistent with the service dog’s execution of its duties.

Part II—Complex service dog teams

Typically this standard refers to a service dog team comprised of a service dog and a handler with a disability who is capable of meeting all of the requirements of the Standard independently. In some cases, the handler with a disability needs assistance meeting all or some of the requirements of the Standard. These situations are referred to as complex teams.

Complex teams include situations where:

• A support person(s) is needed in order to meet the requirements of the Standard that relate to the handler/user’s duty of care to the service dog, both physical and emotional needs

• A support person(s) is needed in order to meet the requirements of the Standard that relate to the handler/user’s management of the service dog in public, execution of task specific training and ongoing training of the service dog

• A support person(s) is needed for all or part of both of the situations described above 

This section, however, indicates complex situations where:

• There are differences to the requirements to accommodate specific disabilities

• The disability is neither permanent nor stable

• A person (or persons) is added to the service dog team to provide care for the service dog

• Requirements applicable to the case when the person with a disability is not independently capable and another person is the handler of the service dog, with the person with a disability considered as a user

6 Requirements for complex service dog teams

6.1 Complexities due to the duration of disability

The duration of the disability shall be defined as follows: permanent (such as an amputated leg), of long duration (such as a diagnosis of bi-polar disorder) or of a medium term (such as balance problems). Short-term disabilities are unlikely to result in support by a service dog.

 6.2 Situations requiring a support person

6.2.1 Support with care to the service dog

 In situations where a handler/user requires a support person(s) in order to meet the requirements of this Standard that relate to the handler/user’s duty of care to the service dog, the handler/user’s will ensure the support person(s) understands and is able to meet the requirements of this Standard.

As part of their duty of care to the service dog, the support person(s) may fulfil the following requirements:

• Providing veterinary care (see 5.1.2.4)

• Providing for physical needs of the service dog (see 5.1.2.5)

• Providing for the non-physical needs of the service dog, item 4 only (playful stimulation) (see 5.1.2.6)

• Record keeping (see 5.1.2.8) 

6.2.2 Substitute and alternate handlers

 Substitute and alternate handlers may fulfil the requirements of the Standard on behalf of the user in situations where a user requires a support person(s) in order to meet the requirements of the Standard that relate to the user’s management of the service dog in public, execution of task specific training and ongoing training of the service dog.

6.2.2.1 Substitute handler

In some situations, the person with a disability is unable to act as the primary handler for the service dog. In these situations, the service dog team

consists of the person with a disability, the substitute handler and the service dog. The substitute handler is responsible for ensuring that the service dog team functions within the boundaries of this Standard. If the person with a disability is not able to handle the service dog in public to the level set by this Standard without the assistance of a substitute handler, they shall not be considered a functioning service dog team without the presence of the substitute handler.

A substitute handler shall comply with the following requirements:

• Knowledge of abilities and limitations of the service dog (see 5.1.2.1)

• Canine first aid knowledge (see 5.1.2.2 Canine first aid knowledge)

• Detailed service dog knowledge (see 5.1.2.3)

• Veterinary care (see  5.1.2.4)

• Providing for the physical needs of the service dog (see 5.1.2.5)

• Providing for the non-physical needs of the service dog (see 5.1.2.6)

• Recognition of stress/ fear/ anxiety signs (see 5.1.2.7 Recognition of stress, fear and anxiety signs)

• Record keeping (see 5.1.2.8)

• Knowledge and application of humane training (see 5.1.3)

• Safe to the public (see 5.3.4.1 Safe to the public)

• Unobtrusive (see 5.3.4.2)

• Safe from the public or environmental or structural hazards (see 5.3.4.3) 

Substitute handlers shall also have knowledge of, and be able to demonstrate, how the service dog mitigates the disability of the person with a disability (see 5.3.3). 

6.2.2.2 Alternate handlers

There may be situations where the person with a disability participates in activities where the substitute handler is not able to be physically present with the person with a disability and their service dog. In these situations, an alternate handler shall replace the substitute handler in the service dog team.

Note: An example of this situation is a person with a form of autism spectrum disorder requiring a separate handler that attends classes or a workshop where the institution involved provides a support person, or a family member is involved.

The substitute handler shall ensure that the alternate handler is situation-specifically trained and can perform their duties to a level required for the team by this Standard.

The substitute handler shall provide to any alternate handler adequate situation-specific knowledge and training applicable to the person with a disability so that the team is able, at all times, to meet the requirements of this Standard.

 An alternate handler’s duties, knowledge and skill base shall include, but are not limited to:

• Knowledge of abilities and limitations of the service dog (see 5.1.2.1)

• Knowledge of canine first aid and familiarity with the emergency action plan, and ability to recognize symptoms that would require action (see 5.1.2.2 Canine first aid knowledge)

• Detailed service dog knowledge (see 5.1.2.3)

• Providing for the physical needs of the service dog: fresh water, appropriate food, suitable areas for elimination and removal of waste and safe environment, including safety from the person with a disability, if applicable (see 5.1.2.5)

• Recognition of stress, fear, and anxiety signs (see 5.1.2.7 Recognition of stress, fear and anxiety signs) 

The alternate handler shall have sufficient knowledge of humane training principles, including what is and is not appropriate with a service dog.

In accordance with humane training principles, the alternate handler shall have knowledge of rewards and timing and be able to reinforce existing behaviours (such as ‘sit’) and non-behaviours (such as ignoring food on the ground). They shall report any problems requiring training to the substitute handler.

The alternate handler shall also have knowledge and be able to demonstrate how the service dog can help mitigate the disability of the person with a disability in situations where they will be handling the service dog.

7 Marking

A service dog’s equipment shall render the dog readily identifiable as part of a service dog team.

The following markings shall appear on identification carried by the team:

• The term “Service dog team” or “Équipe du chien de service” or an alternate marking as indicated in the markings on the service dog’s equipment

• The name of the handler

• The name of the person with a disability, if different from that of the handler

• The name of the service dog

• The number corresponding to the microchip implanted in the service dog

• If different from that of the handler, the name of the owner of the service dog, along with contact information

• A photograph of the service dog team

• The number of this National Standard of Canada: “CAN/CGSB-193.1”

8 Inspection

During all inspections, the assessors shall have compassion and understanding of the needs of the service dog team during planning, execution and follow up. The inspection shall be a respectful and collaborative engagement, have a natural flow to the items and, as much as possible, minimize the stress to the service dog team. At no time before or during inspection shall the assessor touch the service dog team.

The service dog shall be attentive to the handler and respond to the handler without showing stress or avoidance. 

In order to successfully complete the inspection, the service dog shall not display behaviour that requires major restraint or a continuously tight leash to perform.

At no time during inspection shall the handler issue harsh cues/reprimands or physically manipulate the service dog.

8.1 Handler

8.1.1 Handler suitability requirements

8.1.1.1 Determination of handler’s disability

The qualification provided shall be verified by the corresponding jurisdiction, either with the source of the qualification, or through evidence of participation in the indicated government support of a jurisdictional disability support program.

8.1.1.2 Need and readiness for a service dog

The qualifications of the assessor shall be verified to determine:

• The independence of the assessor from the handler

• The assessor’s knowledge respecting the use of service dogs

• The assessor’s competence in the area of the handler’s disability 

The report of assessment shall be reviewed to confirm that it concludes the candidate handler has both a need for a service dog and the ability to safely and responsibly manage the service dog. The report shall also be reviewed to confirm that the items in category A and category B have been considered.

8.1.2 Handler’s canine care knowledge and application

8.1.2.1 Abilities and limitations of the service dog

The handler shall specify the tasks that have been acquired by their service dog, its behaviours, and abilities. The handler shall demonstrate the required knowledge of their expectations of the service dog that take into account its abilities and limitations.

8.1.2.2 Canine first aid knowledge

 The handler shall disclose their emergency plan to cover any urgent canine healthcare or injury situation.

8.1.2.3 Detailed service dog knowledge

The handler shall demonstrate their knowledge of the areas indicated in 5.1.2.3.

8.1.2.4 Veterinary care

The handler shall provide the contact information for the service dog’s attending veterinarian and, if different, the contact information for the local emergency veterinarian.

The handler shall provide evidence of regular maintenance and preventative veterinary care for their service dog through records of care and/or a letter from the attending veterinarian stating the rate and scope of visits (minimum yearly physical examination).

The attending veterinarian shall provide documentation regarding the service dog’s immunity/vaccination status for core vaccinations (as per the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association) and the need/lack of non-core vaccinations.

8.1.2.5 Physical needs of the service dog

The handler shall provide the assessment of the service dog’s need for food (including type, quantity and rate), grooming and exercise provided by the attending veterinarian or by a training organization/legal entity’s assessor.

The handler shall indicate how they are following the recommendations regarding food type, amount and rate of feeding, grooming and exercise.

The handler shall indicate access to fresh water, suitable area(s) for elimination and prompt removal of waste, a safe and secure home environment and a comfortable rest area.

 The handler shall demonstrate the restraint method that improves the overall safety of the service dog and other occupants of the vehicle during transportation (specific to the type of transportation regularly used by the team) such as a seatbelt style harness, tethered kennel, other device, or situational placement.

The handler shall provide confirmation of the alternate plan of care for the physical needs of the service dog should the handler be unable to do so.

8.1.2.6 Non-physical needs of the service dog

The handler shall demonstrate how they meet the points indicated in 5.1.2.6 and how they have tailored the methods of meeting these needs to the behaviours, abilities and limitations of the service dog.

The team shall be observed in non-working conditions to demonstrate how the handler meets the indicated points.

8.1.2.7 Recognition of stress/fear/anxiety signs

The handler shall specify the stress/fear/anxiety signs specific to their service dog.

The handler shall indicate how the stress/fear/anxiety signs are recognized along with the respective mitigation actions.

Note: Signs compatible with stress, fear or anxiety may also occur with certain medical conditions. For example, panting may be associated with stress/fear/anxiety, but can also be associated with medical conditions (heat stroke, fever, Cushing’s disease etc.). 

8.1.2.8 Record keeping

The records of veterinary care, alternate plan of care, and ownership/proxy shall be reviewed for the points indicated in 5.1.2.8.

8.1.3 Handler’s knowledge and application of humane training

The handler shall be assessed on their knowledge and understanding of the principles indicated in 5.1.3 to maintain the service dog’s acquired tasks.

The handler shall indicate at what point professional assistance is needed in the maintenance and ongoing training of their service dog. 

The handler shall be observed in the act of behaviour modification or maintenance work with the service dog. This training can include service dog tasks maintenance, behaviour acquisition, behaviour generalization or acquiring novel responses. The handler shall first indicate how they will use the principles of humane training to modify the service dog’s behaviour through training. They shall then demonstrate a modification in the service dog’s behaviour based on their actions, how they act when the service dog behaves incorrectly and how they reward the service dog for successful behaviour completion.

8.2 Service dogs

8.2.1 Service dog attributes

8.2.1.1 Equipment evaluation

 

A service dog’s equipment shall be examined to determine:

• Ease of identification as a service dog

• The suitability of the equipment for the work the service dog is performing

• Appropriate fit (indicated by tightness/looseness of fit, wear spots, etc.)

• Conformance with bylaws

• If the equipment may cause a risk to the service dog or public, or cause the public to believe the service dog is at risk of physical or mental trauma

• If the equipment does not provide electrical stimulation nor aversive stimulus to the service dog, have points/prongs, tighten to a diameter less than 90% of the service dog’s neck circumference or muzzles the service dog

8.2.1.2 Maturity evaluation

The service dog’s age shall be confirmed by documentation of the date of the service dog’s birth or if this is not available, a letter from the service

dog’s attending veterinarian estimating the service dog’s age. The letter shall also confirm the physical and mental maturity of the service dog.

8.2.1.3 Health evaluation

A registered veterinarian shall provide proof that the service dog is free of immediate or chronic stress, fear, anxiety or discomfort, free of conditions

that may interfere with their ability to work or may put the public at risk. This proof shall include documentation of the requirements in 5.2.1.3.

This documentation shall be dated within 3 months prior to evaluation.

8.2.1.4 Neutering evaluation

A neuter certificate issued by a veterinarian shall indicate proof of neutering.

8.2.1.5 Permanent identification evaluation

The service dog shall be scanned to determine the microchip identifying number.

8.2.1.6 Breed(s) evaluation

The breed or any combination of breeds present shall not be in violation of breed specific legislation in the area the team resides, works or travels, unless the handler provides proof of exclusion from the legislation. 

Note: Exclusion from legislation may only be provided by the regulator(s) involved.

8.2.2 Service dog behaviour in public spaces

8.2.2.1 Evaluation for aggression, excessive fear or excessive shyness

While engaging in a normal daily routine including normal public access events for the team, the service dog shall not display any aggression, excessive fear or excessive shyness.

8.2.2.2 Evaluation for urination/defecation 

While engaging in a normal daily routine including normal public access events for the team, the service dog shall only urinate or defecate in appropriate locations as predetermined. The handler shall promptly remove or arrange for removal of any solid waste created by the service dog. 

8.2.2.3 Evaluation for separation from handler

In a crowded public location, a person unknown to the service dog will promptly approach the team, take the service dog by the leash and remove the service dog from the situation (minimum 6 metres away). The service dog does not have to display a calm response to this situation, but at no time shall the service dog display aggression or unmanageable agitation.

8.3 Service dog team

8.3.1 Team fit

The handler and service dog shall be assessed on each of the points in the physical and behaviour compatibility charts to demonstrate the fit between the listed characteristics.

The team shall also be observed both in their working and relaxation states to verify fit on each of the points in the physical and behaviour compatibility charts.

 An acceptable result occurs when the items on the physical characteristics list and the behaviour characteristics list are assessed overall as a very good match. Any items considered to be less than a good fit within a scale of no match, poor match, good fit, very good fit, and excellent fit, shall be reviewed to determine whether the incompatibility poses an impediment to the team working and living together.

8.3.2 Team bonding—Handler and service dog

The handler shall demonstrate a working bond with their service dog as indicated by the team working effectively together, with the service dog responding to commands, performing tasks or alerting the handler when appropriate, and with the handler responding to the dog’s indications.

8.3.3 Team—Mitigation of handler’s disability

The handler shall demonstrate what symptoms of their disability are mitigated by the service dog’s tasks, how these symptoms are mitigated, and the cue to which the service dog responds (see

8.3.3

 The service dog team shall be observed in a variety of situations, including public settings, where mitigation of the handler’s disability is required.

Upon cue, the service dog shall promptly and reliably engage in the specific tasks. A minimum of three individual tasks shall be observed. A simulation of a handler’s symptom needing mitigation may be used when these symptoms occur spontaneously.

 9 Testing

 During all testing, the assessors shall have compassion and understanding of the needs of the service dog team during the planning, execution and follow up. The testing shall be a respectful and collaborative engagement, have a natural flow to the items and, as much as possible, minimize the stress to the service dog team.

At no time before or during testing shall the assessor touch the service dog team.

The service dog shall be attentive to the handler and respond to the handler without showing stress or avoidance.

 In order to successfully complete testing, the service dog shall not display behaviour that requires major restraint or a continuously tight leash to perform.

At no time during testing shall the handler issue harsh cues/reprimands or physically manipulate the service dog.

9.1 Service dogs

9.1.1 Service dog attributes

9.1.1.1 Size evaluation

The service dog shall be measured in accordance with the following dimensions: weight, length, height and width.

The weight (mass) shall be measured to the nearest kilogram using a calibrated scale.

The physical dimensions shall be measured using a system that is accurate to within 0.1 centimetre and the result will be expressed to the nearest centimetre.

For all of the physical dimensions, the service dog shall be standing with its front feet directly under its shoulder blades, and its hind feet in a comfortable standing position. The head shall be in an erect position.

The length shall be measured from the tip of the service dog’s nose to the point where the tail meets the body.

The height shall be measured from the surface the service dog is standing on to the highest part of their top shoulder blade.

The width shall be measured at the widest part of the service dog.

The service dog shall be classified in size based on the largest individual measurement (weight, length, height or width) as per 5.2.1.6.

9.1.1.2 Behavioural evaluation

The service dog shall be evaluated in a variety of situations.

Each situation shall be evaluated with the service dog in harness or on a loose leash, as appropriate to the team when working. Each situation shall take place in a neutral environment, that is, one where the service dog does not reside or normally inhabit (such as an office). The person that intervenes shall not be known or familiar to the service dog, and preferably a different person for each situation. The handler in each of these situations may be the handler (as defined) or another person familiar to the service dog, such as a trainer.

At no time shall the service dog demonstrate signs of aggression which include, but are not limited to: becoming hyper-focused and rigid, guttural barking, lunging, charging, jumping up, mouthing, muzzle punching, growling, showing teeth (with the exception of yawning) snapping, nipping, and biting.

Following each situation, the service dog shall not show any aggressive behaviour in anticipation of or in response to the incident. Within 30 seconds of the individual completing the situation, the service dog shall return to its normal working state. The handler shall not prepare the service dog for the situation immediately prior to the evaluation. Following each situation, the handler may assist the service dog in returning to its normal working state.

The following situations are appropriate to evaluate conformance:

• Adjacent lively events: The team shall place itself within 6 metres of a situation where sudden, exciting movements of member(s) of the public are occurring for a period no shorter than 3 minutes such as children playing at a playground, community sporting event, or skateboard park

• Stranger’s aggression of the handler: A person shall approach the handler and service dog and behave in a simulated aggressive manner towards the handler for a period of no less than 30 seconds and not more than 45 seconds. At no time shall the person physically touch the handler

• Removal of non-food item: The service dog shall be given a non-food item that is a high-level reward. A person will briskly approach the service dog, take the item and briskly walk away

• Removal of food items: The service dog shall be given a bowl filled with high value food items. A person will briskly approach the service dog, quickly remove the food and briskly walk away

• Tempting object: An individual shall offer the service dog a tempting object, within 15 centimetres of the service dog’s face. The object shall remain in place for no less than 15 seconds. The service dog shall at no point behave in a manner that endangers the individual offering the object. The service dog’s response may include refusal of the object, or if the service dog takes the object, the service dog shall do so in a way that does not cause any harm to the person offering the object

• Proximity: The service dog team shall be exposed to a minimum of two situations that require the team to navigate past other animals, at least one of which is another dog. The team shall pass within 0.8 metre of the animal and at no time shall the service dog demonstrates signs of aggression or behave in a way that puts the handler or other animal at risk

• Prey Simulation: The service dog team shall be exposed to a minimum of one situation where the service dog’s chase drive will be assessed. From a distance no greater than 1 metre, a toy will be moved rapidly away from the service dog. At no time shall the service dog demonstrate unmanageable lunging or pulling of the handler

• Exposure to disruptions: The service dog team shall heel around a room. The service dog shall pass within 1.2 metre of a minimum of one of each of the following disruptions: visual stimulus, auditory stimulus, tactile stimulus/strange surfaces and olfactory (smell) stimulus. At no time shall the service dog show a fear or excitement response that cannot be redirected within 5 seconds

• Calmness while waiting: The service dog team shall manoeuvre into a stationary position and hold that position for a period of 15 to 30 minutes. During this time, the service dog shall not damage anything present in the environment, nor shall they demonstrate an unmanageable level of energy (including, but not limited to: frequently breaking position, pacing, heavy panting, extensive repositioning, squirming or scratching. 

9.1.2 Service dog obedience skills

The following behaviours will be assessed in a neutral environment, that is, one where the service dog does not reside or normally inhabit (such as an office). This environment shall have a minimum of five different types of distractions present within 2 metre of the service dog. The handler in each of these situations may be the handler (as defined) or another person familiar to the service dog, such as a trainer. The handler may issue cues to the service dog, but at no time shall the handler issue harsh or aggressive cues or reprimands or physically manipulate the service dog. The service dog shall be in harness or on a loose leash, or off-leash, as appropriate to the situation being evaluated.

Distractions include, but are not limited to visual, auditory, olfactory (smell), sensory, toy, food, animal/cat and people.

The following specific behaviours are assessed:

• Sit: The handler shall issue a cue for the service dog to sit. The service dog shall respond by moving into a sitting position with its hips touching the ground within 5 seconds. A supplementary cue may be issued, if needed

• Down: The handler shall issue a cue for the service dog to down. The service dog shall respond by moving into a down position with its elbows and hocks touching the ground within 10 seconds. A supplementary cue may be issued if needed

• Stay with distractions: Following a successful sit or down command the handler shall also issue a cue for the service dog to stay. A minimum of three distractions shall be present in the area. The service dog shall remain at or below the position for a period of 5 minutes

• Recall with distractions: The handler shall place the service dog in a stay (either standing, sitting or down). A cue may be issued to position the service dog and another cue may be issued for the service dog to wait. A minimum of three distractions shall be present in the area. The handler shall move 1.8 metres away from the service dog and issue a cue for the service dog to come to the handler. Within 5 seconds, the service dog shall begin moving directly towards the handler and move to the handler in a direct path without investigating any distractions. The service dog shall come to a location within reach of the handler

• Stay with the handler at a distance: In a secure space, the handler shall place the service dog in a stay (either standing, sitting or down). A cue may be issued to position the service dog and another cue may be issued for the service dog to stay. The handler shall then move a distance of at least 10 metres while in sight of the service dog and remain for 2 minutes. The handler shall then return to the service dog. The service dog shall stay in that location until the handler returns

• Leave it: The handler shall heel with the service dog passing within 0.8 metre of a high value food item on the floor. The service dog shall maintain a heel position and not lunge towards the food or eat the food. The handler may issue a cue while approaching the food, but shall not issue a harsh command, tighten the leash, provide physical correction or aggressively reprimand the service dog at any point

• Navigate through a crowd with distractions: The service dog team shall navigate through a crowd of people with a minimum of three distractions present in the area. While navigating, the service dog shall remain within 0.6 metres of the handler unless otherwise needed for service work. The service dog shall avoid the people and not interact with any of the distractions. If the service dog is distracted, it shall respond quickly to redirection. At no time shall the service dog pose a risk to the safety of the public or the handler. The service dog shall maintain heel position in the following situations:

left turn, right turn, U turn, stop, back up, slower pace, faster pace and leash drop (travelling at least 0.8 metre). The handler may issue cues while navigating, but shall not issue a harsh command, tighten the leash, provide physical correction or aggressively reprimand the service dog at any point

9.2 Service dog team

9.2.1 Team performance in public

9.2.1.1 Safe to the public

At all times during the assessment, the handler shall demonstrate they have control over the service dog.

The handler may, unless otherwise stated in the requirements, assist the service dog using cues or praise during each behaviour. At no time during the assessment shall the handler issue a harsh command or physically manipulate/restrain the service dog to demonstrate control.

Note: Situations that may be used to demonstrate control can include, but are not limited to: Entering/exiting a vehicle, navigating a cashier lane, passing through a doorway, dropping the leash while heeling, handler putting the service dog on a stay while putting on shoes or task work such as the service dog pushing the automatic door button.

9.2.1.2 Unobtrusive 

All testing shall be conducted in a public setting that is part of the regular activities of the service dog team. Examples of demonstration of compliance for the different requirements include:

• Waiting out of path of traffic: The position of the service dog while the handler is standing or sitting will be assessed to ascertain that other members of the public are able to pass within 0.3 metre of the handler and not be obstructed in their direction of movement by the service dog

• Matching pace: The team shall move together with the service dog remaining within 0.3 metre of the handler. The handler’s movement shall include, but not be limited to: moving slowly, moving quickly, stopping, backing up, turning left, turning right and passing through tight spaces

• Manoeuvring in tight spaces: The team shall demonstrate manoeuvring in tight spaces. In manoeuvring, the handler may offer the service dog cues or light physical touch. Once the team has manoeuvred into position, members of the public shall be able to pass within 0.6 metres of the service dog team and not be obstructed in their direction of movement by the service dog

• Public transportation: Public transportation that is present in their normal or anticipated working environment shall be used. The team shall enter the vehicle, stop in an area out of the path of traffic, remain in that area while the vehicle is in motion and exit the vehicle in a manner that does not unduly disrupt other members of the public

• Food resistance: The service dog shall encounter:

1. Static food on the floor for a period of no less than 30 seconds, within 0.3 metre of the service dog in a stay

2. Food being dropped within 0.3 metre of the service dog in a stay

3. Static food on the floor within 0.3 metre of the service dog walking

4. Food offered from a stranger’s hand At no time shall the service dog touch the food. The handler is allowed to give verbal or physical cues, but shall not physically restrain the service dog or issue loud or harsh commands.

• Vocalization: At no time during any of the testing, shall the service dog engage in unwanted (non-alert) vocalizations

 9.2.1.3 Safe from the public or environmental or structural hazards

9.2.1.3.1 Human distraction evaluation

 In a public setting, a person unfamiliar to the service dog or handler shall approach the service dog team and engage the handler in conversation and attempt to physically interact with the dog for 10 to 15 seconds. The dog may be in a sit, down or stand. The handler shall maintain control of the service dog and take steps to ensure the dog does not interfere with the person. The service dog team shall not react in a manner that potentially would pose a risk to the safety of the public.

9.2.1.3.2 Attacking dogs evaluation

The handler shall specify the precautions he or she takes when an out of control dog is observed in their vicinity and shall also indicate what actions they would take in the case of an attacking dog.

 9.2.1.3.3 Hazards evaluation

 The team shall be observed during testing in public settings to determine how the handler positions the service dog to ensure safety from hazards during execution of its duties.

————–

Annex A (informative) Training best practices

A.1 Animal welfare in training

A.1.1 Animal welfare and humane treatment

At all stages of development and training of a service dog and a service dog team, organizations and individuals undertaking to prepare and place dogs into service to mitigate the disability(s) of an individual should apply humane care, training, and treatment that addresses the individual needs of each and every dog in the care of the organization or individual. Minimally, organizations and individuals should have an understanding and commitment to the dog’s primary welfare needs as laid out in the following Five Freedoms.

• Freedom from hunger and thirst – by ready access to fresh water and a diet to maintain full health and vigor

• Freedom from discomfort – by providing an appropriate environment including shelter and a comfortable resting area

• Freedom from pain, injury or disease – by prevention or rapid diagnosis and treatment

• Freedom to express normal behaviour – by providing sufficient space, proper facilities and company of the animal’s own kind

• Freedom from fear and distress – by ensuring conditions and treatment which avoid mental suffering

A.1.1.1 Source of reference

Canadian Federation of Humane Societies – Canadian reference original source is U.K 1965, Brambell report. The Five Freedoms can be consulted on the Farm Animal Welfare Council website.

 

A.1.2 Humane hierarchy

The humane hierarchy serves to guide dog trainers and handlers in their decision-making process during dog training and behaviour modification. Additionally, it will assist the public in understanding the standard of care to be applied by dog training and behaviour professionals when determining the order of implementation for applying training practices and methodologies.

 A.1.2.1 Ideal methods

• Health, nutritional, and physical factors: Ensuring that any indicators for possible medical, nutritional, or health factors are addressed by a licensed veterinarian. Also ensuring that factors in the physical environment that have a potential to impact the dog’s health, nutrition and physical condition are addressed

• Antecedents: Implementing environmental management strategies to prevent the behaviour from occurring

• Positive reinforcement, classical conditioning (not listed in order of preference)

1. Positive reinforcement: Ensuring that reinforcement is delivered for the desirable alternative behaviour and that such reinforcement is of higher value to the dog than the reinforcement the dog has received in the past for the unwanted behaviour

2. Classical conditioning: How a dog learns to associate a neutral stimulus (like a sound, or a light) with a consequence (receiving a piece of food)

A.1.2.2 Acceptable methods

Live with or manage the behaviour, negative punishment, extinction, consult another professional (not listed in order of preference):

• Live with or manage the behaviour: Electing to cease modification techniques and implement a management plan

• Consult another professional: At times, it may be beneficial to consult another professional such as a dog trainer, veterinarian, veterinary behaviourist

or behaviourist for additional advice. Consulting with other professionals may be beneficial, particularly when a problem behaviour does not resolve with the previously mentioned interventions

• Negative punishment: Withdrawing a positive reinforcer when the undesirable behaviour occurs to reduce the probability that the behaviour will occur in the future

• Extinction: Withholding reinforcement of a previously reinforced behaviour with the goal of extinguishing the behaviour

A.1.2.3 Unacceptable methods

• Negative reinforcement: Withdrawing an aversive stimulus when the desired behaviour occurs in order to increase the probability that the behaviour will occur in the future

• Positive punishment: Delivering an aversive consequence in response to the undesirable behaviour in order to reduce the probability that the behaviour will occur in the future

A.2 Acquisition of dogs for service dog training

A service dog should be behaviourally safe in public, free of any health concerns, and not exhibit behaviour that poses a risk to the handler, public, or elements present in the public environment.

Primary acquisition considerations include:

• Genetic and/or certified health testing of dogs for soundness

• Behavioural testing/assessment on dogs

• Developmentally appropriate puppy raising/socialization programs

• Adherence to the Five Freedoms and humane hierarchy

A.2.1 Ideal sources

Service dog program whose dogs are bred and raised specifically for the purpose of service.

A.2.2 Acceptable sources

Professional breeders following the breeding and raising protocols of service dog programs.

Dogs acquired from licensed community animal rescue/shelters, that follow strict protocols related to the animals within their care. Potential service dog candidates from these sources should be assessed as outlined in the primary acquisition considerations.

A.2.3 Unacceptable sources

Backyard breeders, large volume breeders, or pet stores.

Re-homing organizations offering dogs which show aggression or reactivity towards animals or people.

 Breeders specializing in dogs bred or trained for aggression/bite work.

 A.2.3.1 Source of reference

 The Canadian Association of Professional Pet Dog Trainers

A.3 Behaviour and training

Training times will vary depending on the breed and maturity of the dog, skill level of the trainer and complexity of the training regime. Typically, a fully trained service dog should respond to trained commands 90% of the time on the first cue, regardless of environment, to be considered fully trained.

The dog’s appropriateness and overall obedience and behaviour while in public also determines whether the dog is fully trained. The fully trained dog will not disrupt normal activity when in public (such as vocalizing, foraging, soliciting attention).

These tools should not be used as a primary means of acquiring new behaviours:

• Taut leash

• Front-range harness

• Muzzle

A.3.1 Training—New behaviours

Training is the process of imparting skills to the handler and the dog.

Dogs should undergo training over time in order to develop and then maintain those skills. Training sessions should be of duration appropriate to the age and experience of the dog, and should not cause undue stress, anxiety or fear to the dog. If a dog is showing more than an average of one stress/anxiety/fear sign every two minutes over a twenty-minute training session, the session should be stopped and training method should be re-evaluated. If after evaluation of the training method the dog demonstrates signs of stress, anxiety or fear, the dog is not a suitable training candidate.

A.3.1.1 Source of reference

• Applied Behaviour and Training, Volume 1, Steve Lindsay

• Handbook Canine Behaviour; A Photo Illustrated Guide, Barbara Handelman Ideal training methods 

These ideal training methods have been shown in research to improve the human-canine relationship, increase the amount of time the dog pays attention to their handler, predictability of behaviours and produce enthusiastic learners who are flexible in their behaviours. These traits are vitally important in service dogs.

New behaviours should be trained through luring, capturing, or shaping. As the new skills are learned to fluency, they should be proofed for distance, duration, and distraction.

• The primary means of training new behaviours should be through reward based training—Positive reinforcement

• Motivation: Praise, food, treats, toys, play, access to environments, and functional rewards

Ending unwanted behaviours is an important step in service dog training. To end unwanted behaviours, the following methods of management are ideal.

• Determine if there are any physical, emotional, environmental or other reasons for the breakdown and remedy those reasons

• Determine if there are any positive reinforcers maintaining the unwanted behaviour and remove them

• Fail to provide any positive reinforcement for the unwanted behaviour

• Watch for antecedents of the behaviour and change the environment to prevent the behaviour from occurring

• Remove the dog from the situation

• Training an incompatible behaviour

• If the unwanted behaviour is occurring due to an association with an aversive stimulus, changing the dog’s association with the stimulus at a sub-threshold intensity

A.3.2 Ideal training tools

• Loose leash—The ideal leash is 1.2-1.8 metres and made of durable material such as leather or nylon. It will be of consistent length (non-retractable).

The leash should be meant as a passive restraint device rather than a corrective or coercive tool

• Targets—Visual and scent targets can be used to aid and assist in moving dogs without physical coercion, training stationing behaviours, and teaching cues at distance, amongst other uses. They can be of varying sizes and material, but should not cause pain or fear for the dog

• Markers—Use of a secondary or conditioned reinforcer, to ‘mark’ or indicate the behaviour being reinforced. Tools can be used as markers, such as clickers, lights or devices/collars that emit sound only. A marker shall never have been previously paired with a negative stimulus

• Rewards—Items the dog finds reinforcing, such as treats, toys or affection 

A.3.3 Acceptable training methods

These training methods and tools can be effective in service dog training, however they require a great deal of skill to use in a way to ensure there are no negative outcomes for the dog or handler. These methods/tools shall only be used by or supervised by professionals and the stress/anxiety/fear level of the dog shall be closely monitored to determine if the method/tool needs to be suspended.

• Extinction—Withholding positive reinforcement of a previously reinforced behaviour with the goal of stopping/extinguishing the behaviour

• Removal of positive reinforcement when behaviour occurs, with the goal of reducing the probability of the unwanted behaviour occurring in the future

• Physical moulding—Placing the dog in position by hand

A.3.4 Acceptable training tools

Humane management tools are acceptable to mitigate the risk of injury to the dog or handler in the event of an unexpected breakdown in trained behaviours.

These tools can be used to facilitate new behaviours in service dogs. However, there is a significant risk if the tool is used improperly. Only trainers with certification in the principles of humane dog training should attempt to use them.

 Techniques 

Negative punishment: Withdrawing a positive reinforcer when the undesirable behaviour occurs to reduce the probability that the behaviour will occur in the future.

 These tools should not be used as a primary means of acquiring new behaviours:

• Taut leash

• Head collar

• Front-range harness

• Muzzle

• Vibrating collars 

A.3.5 Unacceptable training methods

These training methods are often used with the best intentions, with reasoning that certain breeds of dogs or dogs with different life experience require/can

take different handling or that handlers with physical weaknesses may need them to ensure safety and compliance. However, these training methods and tools

can create fearful, anxious, emotionally unstable dogs. There is also increasing evidence that while these methods and tools can initially create compliance in dogs, over time these dogs tend to be less obedient and show more aggression. With these methods and tools, it is also been shown that dogs may have unintended learning outcomes, such as associating the presence of their owner or commands with discomfort/pain, even outside the training context or if the device is currently absent. A dog with such association shows higher stress and is less able to do its work. Therefore, these methods and tools are unacceptable in service dog training.

Should a dog handler believe that a prospective service dog needs these methods of training in-order to be trained and managed successfully as a service dog then there is strong evidence that either the ideal or acceptable methods of training as outlined are not being correctly applied or the dog is not a suitable candidate to be a service dog.

 Training methods or management tools that employ fear, pain, or create severe or chronic stress are unsuitable for service dogs. Positive physical punishment should not be used in the training of service dogs. Examples include, but are not limited to:

• Leash lasso around the groin

• Hanging

• Helicoptering

• Alpha roll

• Ear pinch/toe hitch/tail step

• ‘Poking’ or jabbing

• Kicking

• Kneeing a dog

A.3.6 Unacceptable training tools

There are some tools that do not directly cause pain/discomfort to the dog, but if used as positive punishment they are still unacceptable in service dog training. These include:

• Citronella collars

• Vibrating collars

• Sound emitting collars used to stop/prevent behaviours

• Collars/devices that have been previously paired with aversive stimulus, even if the aversive stimulus is no longer used)

 Research has shown that dogs that had been previously trained with aversion devices continue to respond with stress and negative behaviours, even when the device is no longer used in that manner.

 There are some training tools that are used as positive punishment that cause the service dog discomfort or pain and are unacceptable in service dog training. 

Unsuitable devices

• Choke collars

• Prong collars

• Electrical producing devices set to a low voltage such as E-collars

• Electrical producing devices that provide a significant voltage such as Shock collars, cattle prods, scat mats

• Throw chains

• Mouse traps and modified mouse traps

• Whip/crop

• Shepherd’s crook

A.3.6.1 Sources of reference

• Marian Breland Bailey and Robert E. Bailey and adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques

• Adapted from Domestic Dog cognition and behavior. The Scientific Study of canis familiaris. In chapter 11: Canine welfare science: An antidote to sentiment and myth. Horowitz A. editor, Springer New York, 2014

• Arhant C, Bubna-Littitz H, Bartels A et al. 2010. Behaviour of smaller and larger dogs : Effects of training methods, inconsistency of owner behaviour and level of engagement in activities with the dog. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 123, 131-142

• Casey RA, Loftus B, Bolster C et al. 2013. Interdog aggression in a U.K owner survey: Prevalence, co-occurrence in different contexts and risk factors. Veterinary record, 172, 127

• Herron ME, Shofer FS, Reisner IR 2009. Survey of the use and outcome of confrontational and non-confrontational training methods in client-owned dogs showing undesired behaviors. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 117, 47-54

• Hiby EF, Rooney NJ, Bradshaw JWS 2004. Dog trainings methods: Their use, effectiveness and interaction with behaviour and welfare. Animal Welfare, 13, 63-69

• Hsu YY, Sun LC 2010. Factors associated with aggressive responses in pet dogs. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 123, 108-123

• O’Sullivan EN, Jones BR, O’Sullivan K Hanlon AJ 2008. Characteristics of 234 dog bite incidents in Ireland during 2004 and 2005. Veterinary Record, 163, 37-42

• Rooney NJ and Cowan s 2011. Trainig methods and owner-dog interactions: Links with dog behaviour and learning ability. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 132, 169-177

• Tami G, Barone A Diverio S 2008. Relationship between management factors and dog behavior in a sample of Argentine Dogos in Italy. Journal of Veterinary Behavior –Clinical Applications and Research, 3, 59-73

• One case report published in 2013. Grohmann et al., 2013. Severe brain damage after punitive training technique with a choke chain collar in a German shepherd dog. Journal of Veterinary Behavior, 8, 180-184

• There is increasing evidence that reward-based training is associated with increased obedience (Hiby et al 2004) and learning ability (Rooney and Cowan 2011)

• Hiby EF, Rooney NJ, Bradshaw JWS 2004. Dog trainings methods: Their use, effectiveness and interaction with behaviour and welfare. Animal Welfare, 13, 63-69

• Rooney NJ and Cowan s 2011. Trainig methods and owner-dog interactions: Links with dog behaviour and learning ability. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 132, 169-177

• References cited in chapter 11: Schilder and van der Borg 2004; Schalke et al. 2007

• Schilder MBH, van der Borg JAM 2004. Training dogs with the help of the shock collar: Short and long term behavioural effects. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 85, 319-334

• Schalke E, Stichnoth J, Ott S, Jones-Baade R, 2007. Clinical signs caused by the use of electric training collars on dogs in everyday life situations. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 105, 369-380

A.4 Terms and definitions commonly used in industry definition list of 52 items

A.4.1 Operant conditioning

Operant conditioning deals with operants—intentional actions that have an effect on the surrounding environment (source Webster dictionary).

B.F. Skinner set out to identify the processes which made certain operant behaviours more or less likely to occur. Skinner’s theory of operant conditioning was based on the work of Thorndike (1905). Edward Thorndike studied learning in animals using a puzzle box to propose the theory known as the ‘Law of Effect’.

A.4.2 The law of effect

The law of effect is the consequence of an event or behaviour. Any behaviour that is followed by pleasant consequences is likely to be repeated, and any behaviour followed by unpleasant consequences is likely to be stopped.

A.4.2.1 Source of reference

McLeod, S. A. (2007). Edward Thorndike.

Simply Psychology Thorndike, E. L. (1898). Animal intelligence: An experimental study of the associative processes in animals. Psychological Monographs: General and Applied, 2(4), i-109.

A.4.3 Cue/Stimulus

The cue is a clear word and/or signal for a behaviour. The stimulus may be environmental.

A.4.3.1 Source of reference

Karen Pryor clicker training

A.4.4 Stimulus control

The response is said to be under stimulus control when presentation of the stimulus fulfills four conditions: the behaviour is always offered when the cue is presented; the behaviour is not offered when the cue is absent; the behaviour is not offered in response to a different cue; and no other behaviour occurs in response to that cue.

A.4.4.1 Source of reference

Karen Pryor clicker training

A.4.5 Fluency

Ability to respond quickly, without hesitation, accurately, and thoroughly.

A.4.5.1 Source of reference

Marian Breland Bailey, Ph.D., and Robert E. Bailey.

A.4.6 Primary reinforcer

Food, fluids, sleep, proper temperature, sex are all naturally reinforcing stimuli and examples of primary reinforcers.

A.4.6.1 Source of reference

Marian Breland Bailey, Ph.D., and Robert E. Bailey.

A.4.7 Secondary reinforcer or conditioned reinforcer

By repeatedly pairing a neutral cue (example clicker sound) with presentation of a favoured food treat, the clicker sound will become predictive of the treat and thus becomes a conditioned reinforcer or secondary reinforcer. A conditioned reinforcer (CR) is therefore the result of previous classical conditioning.

A.4.7.1 Source of reference

Adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques.

A.4.8 Reinforcement

The process of using reinforcers is called reinforcement. Reinforcement increases the probability of appearance of the behaviour, the frequency and intensity of the behaviour. Reinforcement is given after the behaviour.

A.4.9 Positive reinforcement

Application of a reinforcer (anything the dog enjoys, such as food, play, toys, petting/attention) immediately following a behaviour that increases the likelihood of the behaviour being repeated in the future.

A.4.9.1 Sources of reference

Adapted from Operant Conditioning—Marian Breland Bailey, Ph.D., and Robert E. Bailey; Adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques.

A.4.10 Negative reinforcement

Term described by B. F. Skinner in his theory of operant conditioning. In negative reinforcement, a response or behaviour is strengthened by stopping, removing or avoiding a negative outcome or aversive stimulus.

A.4.10.1 Source of reference

B. F. Skinner

A.4.11 Schedule of reinforcement

Schedules of reinforcement can be continuous or intermittent.

A.4.12 Continuous schedule of reinforcement

Reinforcement is delivered after every response (behaviour).

A.4.13 Intermittent schedule of reinforcement

Reinforcement is delivered after some of the responses (behaviours). Intermittent reinforcement can be scheduled as either fixed or variable.

A.4.14 Fixed interval of reinforcement

The first response is reinforced after a fixed predetermined time interval.

A.4.15 Fixed ratio of reinforcement

A response is reinforced after a fixed predetermined number of repetitions.

A.4.16 Variable interval of reinforcement

The first response after a variable length of time is reinforced.

A.4.17 Variable ratio of reinforcement

A response is reinforced after a variable number of repetitions (same principle as a slot machine).

A.4.17.1 Sources of reference

Marian Breland Bailey, Ph.D., and Robert E. Bailey; and adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques.

A.4.18 Punishment

Punishment decreases the probability of appearance of the behaviour.

A.4.19 Positive punishment

Punishment involves the application of an aversive stimulus during or immediately (within 1-3 seconds) following a behaviour. To be effective, the stimulus must be intense enough to reduce the dog’s desire to repeat the behaviour, without causing physical harm. Timing and consistency are critical. Aversive stimuli, particularly those that are severely painful, frequently repeated, and inescapable, can produce fearful, anxious, emotionally crippled individuals.

A.4.19.1 Sources of reference

Marian Breland Bailey and Robert E. Bailey and adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques.

A.4.20 Negative punishment

Removal of what the subject wants ex: toy, treats, attention etc.

A.4.20.1 Sources of reference

Marian Breland Bailey and Robert E. Bailey and adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques.

A.4.21 Jackpot

Very large reward – extra for excellence.

A.4.22 Latent learning

Happens after the fact, during the interval between training sessions.

A.4.22.1 Source of reference

Psychology Glossary—TBD

A.4.23 Luring

Target training, the dog follows the target into position or behaviour. Technique used in operant conditioning behaviour analysis (OCBA).

A.4.23.1 Sources of reference

Marian Breland Bailey and Robert E. Bailey and adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques.

A.4.24 Shaping

Shaping refers to the process whereby the dog can be trained to perform increasingly complex tasks by building on their existing knowledge. This is accomplished by gradually withdrawing rewards for general behaviours and progressively rewarding only the behaviours that more closely approximate the desired behaviour.

The behaviour is changed by the use of differential reinforcement (reinforcement of an alternative behaviour while ignoring/not reinforcing the undesirable behaviour). This technique is used in operant conditioning behaviour analysis (OCBA).

A.4.24.1 Sources of reference

Marian Breland Bailey and Robert E. Bailey and adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques.

A.4.25 Capturing

Marking or rewarding a behaviour that is offered at random with the conditioned reinforcer. Technique used in operant conditioning behaviour analysis (OCBA).

A.4.25.1 Sources of reference

Marian Breland Bailey and Robert E. Bailey and adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques.

A.4.26 Molding (physical molding)

Placing the dog in position by hand or by use of the environment (e.g. walking a dog along a fence/wall to limit the distance from the handler when training a “heel position”). Technique used in operant conditioning behaviour analysis (OCBA).

A.4.26.1 Sources of reference

Marian Breland Bailey and Robert E. Bailey and adapted from Landsberg, Hunthausen Ackerman: Behavior Problems of the Dog and Cat, Saunders Elsevier, Toronto, Third Edition, 2013; Chapter 7, Treatment – behavior modification techniques.

A.4.27 Imitation

Imitation is considered the most complex and also most rare social learning mechanism in the animal kingdom. True social learning includes three hallmarks of imitation: faithful copying, deferred imitation and selective imitation. Matching one’s behaviour to that of a demonstrator is the only widely recognized outcome of social learning.

A.4.27.1 Source of reference

Adapted from Domestic Dog cognition and behavior. The Scientific Study of canis familiaris. In chapter 4: Dog imitation and its possible origins. Horowitz A. editor, Springer New York, 2014.

A.4.28 Extinction

When a previously conditioned behaviour is no longer reinforced, it becomes weaker, less likely to occur.

A.4.28.1 Source of reference

Adapted from Domestic Dog cognition and behavior. The Scientific Study of canis familiaris. In chapter 4: Dog imitation and its possible origins. Horowitz A. editor, Springer New York, 2014.

A.4.29 Extinction burst

When the reinforcement is first removed, sudden bursts of unwanted behaviour (will most likely happen) as the unwanted behaviour goes through extinction.

A.4.29.1 Source of reference

Adapted from Domestic Dog cognition and behavior. The Scientific Study of canis familiaris. In chapter 4: Dog imitation and its possible origins. Horowitz A. editor, Springer New York, 2014.

A.4.30 Latency

Time interval between when you give the cue and when the dog starts to respond to the cue.

A.4.30.1 Source

Karen Pryor clicker training

A.4.31 Marking behaviours

Use of a secondary or conditioned reinforcer, to “mark” or indicate the behaviour being rewarded.

A.4.32 Training methods

Training methods can be classified according to the four types of reinforcement:

• Positive reinforcement (food reward)

• Positive punishment (deliberate infliction of acute pain)

• Negative punishment (withholding of an anticipated reward or removal of a reward)

• Negative reinforcement (cessation of pain or other aversive stimulus)

Positive punishment, especially the infliction of pain through hitting, twisting of the ears, choking and electric shocks is aversive and welfare-reducing.

There is increasing evidence that dogs trained with positive punishment tend to be less obedient and/or more aggressive than those trained using rewards.

Dogs trained harshly also show signs indicative of fear and anxiety.

Annex B (informative) Additional information

The additional information contained in this Annex represents informative material related to the requirements mentioned in the normative sections of this Standard. 

B.1 Recognition of stress/fear/anxiety signs

Consult sections

4.1.2.7 Recognition of stress/fear/anxiety signs,

5.1.2.7 Recognition of stress, fear and anxiety signs

 and

8.1.2.7 Recognition of stress/fear/anxiety signs

 for more information.

Signs of stress/fear/anxiety include:

• Avoidance

• Defensive aggression

• Panting

• Salivation

• Pacing

• Excessive activity

• Visual scanning

• Elimination

• Dilated pupils

• Vocalization

• Hiding

• Seeking out human contact

• Seeking out contact with other dogs or pets

• Attention-seeking behaviours such as pawing at a person

• Lowered body posture, flattened ear position, low tail position

• Anorexia

• Digging

• Lip licking

• Lip smacking

• Trembling

• Aggression

• Agitation

• Hiding

• Withdrawal

Sudden appearance of new behaviours (pica; aggression; anxious behaviours), especially in middle-aged or older animals, points to an underlying medical condition.

Many of these signs, though associated with various stressful stimuli, can also be associated with disease. Lip licking, repeated swallowing, and smacking can occur in animals that are nauseous. Trembling can be seen in animals with fever (shivering) or neurologic disorders (tremors). Restlessness, pacing, or increased activity can be seen in dogs with painful or neurologic conditions.

B.2 Canine first aid knowledge

 Consult sections

4.1.2.2 Canine first aid knowledge,

5.1.2.2 Canine first aid knowledge

 and

8.1.2.2 Canine first aid knowledge.

B.2.1 Treating for severity

Recommendations for assessing severity and deciding on appropriate treatment are:

• If there is any doubt, call a veterinarian for guidance

• If hazardous substances are ingested, call a veterinarian for advice on which medical intervention (activated charcoal versus inducing vomiting versus other recommendation, etc.) is needed

• Minor dehydration can be treated at home provided the animal is not vomiting, but moderate to severe dehydration will require veterinarian assessment to determine the underlying cause and may require the service dog to be hospitalized

• If heat stroke, heat exhaustion, or hypothermia is evident, call a veterinarian. Heat stroke can be life threatening and hypothermia can be the consequence of various causes, with the underlying conditions needing to be addressed

• Broken bones usually require medical attention. Caution needs to be taken in handling the dog, as the pain may cause it to bite the person administering first aid

• Bloat may be life threatening and requires medical assessment to determine the underlying cause

• Seizures require medical assessment to determine the underlying cause and whether the condition is truly a seizure

B.2.2 First aid kit

It is good practice for the handler at all times to be in possession of a first aid kit when with the service dog. This kit should include at minimum:

• Emergency veterinary contact information

• Minimum 3, 10 x 10 cm sterile dressings

• 0.5 metre of material to secure sterile dressings

• Minimum one dose of activated charcoal

• Minimum one dose of styptic powder

B.3 Breeds

Consult sections

4.2.1 Service dog attributes,

5.2.1.7 Acceptable breed

 and

8.2.1.6 Breed(s) evaluation.

Breeds commonly used as service dogs include: Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, Poodles and German Shepherds.

Breeds not recommended as service dogs (this list is not exhaustive): American Pitbull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, English Bull Terrier, American Bulldog, Dogo Argentino, Fila Brasileiro, Bullmastiff, Portuguese Mastiff, Mastino Neapolitano, Majorca Mastiff, Dogue de Bordeaux or Cane Korso/ Dogo Canario.

Belgian Malinois, Akita, Tosa Inu, Alabai, Kangal, Caucasian Shepherd Dog, Tornjak, South-Russian Shepherd, Black Russian Terrier, Yugoslavian Shepherd Dog, Anatolian Shepherd, Central Asian Shepherd, Portuguese Sheepdog, Rottweiler, Doberman, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Boerboel, Bandog, Komondor, Kuvasz, Riesenschauzer, Wolfdog or Chow Chow.

B.4 Bond

Consult sections

5.3.2 Team bonding—Handler and service dog

 and

8.3.2 Team bonding—Handler and service dog).

The requirement is that the bond be sufficient for the team to work effectively together, meaning that the service dog responds appropriately to cues, commands or alerts the handler when needed, and the handler responds to the service dog’s indications. It is preferred that the bond be stronger than a basic working bond, and be more the type where each can anticipate the other’s needs and actions. Experience shows that this is typically achieved after a year working together, although some teams never progress beyond the basic working level.

 The handler’s bond with their service dog may be evaluated in the areas of dog–handler interaction, perceived emotional closeness, and perceived cost.

The evaluation tool should be a measure that has been empirically evaluated for reliability and validity.

It is best for the service dog to have a secure attachment style. The service dog’s attachment style with the handler should be assessed using a measure that has been empirically evaluated for reliability and validity. 

Care should be taken during the assessment in instructions to the handler to ensure that the handler’s behaviour does not unduly influence the responses of the service dog and thus invalidate the results of the testing.

It may be desirable to use the services of a third party tester with significant experience directing protocols and evaluating results of the empirically validated tool.

Note 1: “perceived costs” addresses the bother associated with keeping a service dog covering daily chores as well as periodic upkeep.

Note 2: Such as the Monash Dog Owner Relationship Scale.

Note 3: Such as the Ainsworth Strange Situation Test, adapted for dogs.

B.5 Passing through a security checkpoint with a metal detector

Consult sections 5.3.4.1 Safe to the public.

An example of a time a service dog may need to be off-leash is:

Airports have exceptional levels of security and carefully check all passengers and carry-on personal belongings. A service dog accompanying its handler with or without a travel companion can be accommodated by security in different fashions. Existing policies do not require removal of any of the service dog’s equipment, although the handler may choose to do so to avoid pat-downs.

One way to go through airport security is to simply walk through the metal detector as a team, which should set off the alarm with a consequent pat-down of both the handler and the security dog. Another way is for the handler to go through first while holding the leash of the service dog waiting patiently, and then call the service dog to go through the metal detector; this may result in no alarm for the handler, also possibly for the service dog, depending on what it is wearing. A third method, when travelling with a travel companion is for one person to go through the scanner while the other controls the service dog, then calling the service dog, whose equipment has been removed and sent through the scanner, to go through the metal detector to the first person, with the remaining person then going through the metal detector.

Annex C (informative) Types of service dogs and common tasks

 The following list outlines the types of service dogs commonly in use. The scope of service dog work is constantly evolving and as such the types of service dogs in use may not be limited to those identified here. By definition a service dog is a dog specifically trained to minimize the limitations of a person with a disability. It is common practice within the industry to expect service dogs to be trained to perform a minimum of three tasks to minimize limitations of a person with a disability.

 C.1 Guide dogs

Tasks can include, but are not limited to:

• Safely navigating obstacles

• Provide navigation aid

• Signal curbs, stairs or edge

• Find and lead to doors, entrances and exits

• Warning of approaching vehicles

C.2 Hearing dogs

Tasks can include, but are not limited to:

• Alerting the handler to an alarm clock, timer, telephone, doorbell, door knock, baby crying, someone calling the handler’s name. Alerts usually involve the dog making physical contact with the handler and leading them to the source of the sound

• Alerting the handler to a smoke detector or emergency alarm. The alert does not involve leading the handler back to the source, but is a novel behaviour which the dog only engages in for this sound; for example, making physical contact with the hander and circling

• Warning of approaching vehicles

C.3 Mobility assistance dogs (referred to by some programs as service dogs)

 Tasks can include, but are not limited to:

• Opening and closing doors; including activation of automatic door openers

• Pulling wheel chairs

• Retrieving a variety of objects

• Carrying objects from one spot to another

• Assisting with the removal of clothing

• Assisting with balance and gait

• Activating an emergency alert and/or barking for help in an emergency, retrieving phone

 C.4 Diabetic alert dogs

Tasks can include, but are not limited to:

• Alerting handler to significant changes in blood sugar levels. Alerts can take any form, but should be novel and linked only to this scent work

• Retrieving medication, test kit, or dietary aid

• Activate an emergency response system, and/or seek help

C.5 Seizure response dogs

These dogs are trained to respond in the event of a seizure and not to predict the seizure itself.

Tasks can include, but are not limited to:

• Activate an emergency response system in response to a seizure

• Bark for assistance in response to a seizure

• Provide anxiety reducing support post seizure during recovery, protecting and/or providing comfort during a seizure

• Retrieve medication, telephone

C.6 Autism service dogs 

Tasks can include, but are not limited to: 

• Anchoring on command—Reduces bolting behaviours and increases safety levels

• Visits and nudges—Tactile distraction that redirects to more positive behaviours, reduces/suppresses behavioural outbursts, centres and grounds the individual

• Providing deep pressure on cue or during sleep

• Tracking

C.7 Psychiatric and post-traumatic stress service dogs

 Tasks can include, but are not limited to:

 • Nightmare interruption—Removing blankets, turning on lights, nudges and licks

• Perimeter blocking

• Visits and nudges—Tactile distraction in response to anxiety related behaviours that redirects to more positive behaviours, reduces/suppresses behavioural outbursts, centres and grounds the individual

• Search of house or room—Turning on lights or retrieving an object

• Retrieving medication

• Activating an alert system or seeking assistance

• Providing deep pressure on cue or during sleep

C.8 Severe allergy alert dogs

Tasks can include, but are not limited to:

• Alert handler to allergen. Alerts can take any form, but should be novel and linked only to this scent work

• Activate a life line or emergency response system in response to allergic reaction

• Bark for assistance in response to allergic reaction

• Retrieve medication, telephone

C.9 Reference materials

Types of service dogs:

• What are Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Service Dogs?

• 10 Types of Service Dogs and What They Do

• Learn About the Different Types of Service Dogs

• Fetal alcohol spectrum Assistance Dog

• Top 10 service dogs

• 8 Types Of Service Dogs We Should Be Grateful For

• Service dog (Wikipedia)

• The impact of service dogs on post-traumatic stress disorder in the veteran population

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