Welcome to Service Dog Organizations in Ontario
Approximately 2.6 million people live with a disability in Ontario, and some folks use a service dog to help with life, daily activities, getting around, and generally being able to participate in society and to live the life they’d like to live.
In this article, we will go through some service dog organizations in Ontario. It is not an exhaustive list by any means. Just something to get a general idea of what’s out there. To have your organization added to this list, please contact us.
Help with training service dogs in Ontario
Some folks require an organization to help provide a service dog because their disability (or perhaps other reasons) prevents them from being able to train a dog on their own. Other people may have different types of disabilities that do allow some owner-training to take place.
Even still, training a service dog isn’t exactly easy, and these organizations can definitely help, even though many of them may have a long wait list.
Some of these organizations provide fully trained dogs, while others help people to train their own dogs. No matter which way a person obtains a service dog, there will usually be ongoing training to some degree to ensure the dog remembers what’s been taught and learned.
Let’s begin (in no particular order) – Service Dog Organizations in Ontario
K-9 Country Inn Working Service Dogs
K9C Country Inn is a unique owner-trained service dog training and support program. They have various service dog training and mentorship programs. New service dog teams can receive training and encouragement from experienced trainers.
K9CI has programs for:
- PTSD Service Dogs
- Autism Service Dogs
- Mobility Service Dogs
- Facility Dogs
- Therapy Dogs
Clients are taught:
- Proper handling skills
- Dog Obedience
- Service dog protocols
- Learning about the laws and rights of a service dog handler in Ontario
- Training is taught in person, by video, and/or on the phone
- Training is customized to meet specific needs
- K9CI affiliates can guide you through training in the first two years and will always be available to help after your training is complete
- Check out K9C1 here
When Hounds Fly – Dog Training Toronto
When Hounds Fly offers coaching services for handler-trained dogs. In other words, they will guide you through some of the essential training processes with your own dog. This takes place over a series of private lessons.
*When Hounds Fly no longer seems to have service dog training options. Please contact them to find out if they can still help you with the basics of dog training.
When Hounds Fly would be a great match for the following type of person:
- Someone who lives with a disability in Ontario, and would benefit from a service dog that could perform assistance work or tasks
- Someone who understands that a service animal is a valuable piece of medical equipment that happens to be alive, not a pet
- Someone who has the ability to be open and honest about their disability, limitations, and needs. While they don’t need every last detail or anything like that, a good understanding will allow them to help you to the best of their (and your) potential
- Someone who has the time, energy, and funds to train their own dog on a regular basis with some help (this is not a board-and-train)
- Someone who has a physically and mentally sound dog that they can evaluate, or if you are in the process of acquiring a potential service dog for training
When Hounds Fly is not able to help people who need service dogs for high-level, high-risk tasks. Examples of these would be an anaphylaxis alert service dog, a seizure alert service dog, or guiding a person who is completely blind.
Working Paws is another option if you need help training your service dog. (And who doesn’t? Training a service dog is no easy task.) Working Paws.ca works with privately owned dogs. It has a focus on training your dog to be a future service dog. They work with people of all disabilities and ages.
Their goal is to ensure a perfect match. And don’t worry if you don’t have a dog; they can help you find the perfect match. Working Paws.ca believes in including any person who is living with a developmental or a physical disability. Working Paws caters to its service to meet individual needs.
Working Paws.ca works with privately owned dogs with a focus of training your dog to be a future service dog. A dog for every need exists. We work with people of all ages with a disability and the goal is to ensure a perfect match whether this is your dog or a dog that we find for you.
The mandate at Working Paws.ca is to include anyone with a developmental or physical disability who could benefit from a service dog regardless of a person’s age. Working Paws caters its service to meet your personal needs.WorkingPaws.ca
COPE Service Dogs in Ontario
COPE Service Dogs specializes in training dogs for people who primarily have mobility disabilities.
- They currently do not deal with psychiatric service dogs
- They are currently serving clients in Canada within a 3-hour driving distance of Barrie, Ontario within the Canadian border
- COPE does not discriminate on the basis of ethnicity, level of literacy, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, or disability
Thames Centre Service Dogs
Thames Centre Service Dogs’ mission is to ‘provide humanely trained, trustworthy service dogs of excellence to improve client’s quality of life, while safely guiding them towards increased independence.
They are located just outside Mount Brydges in Caradoc County and have an extensive adult program at their facility.
Their clients include – for example:
- Various issues
- Brain injury/illness
- Operational Stress Injury
- Psychiatric health concerns
- Other health concerns
Please contact them to see if you qualify. Phone (519) 318-4658.
Address: 23698 Sutherland Rd, Mount Brydges, ON N0L 1W0
National Service Dogs Ontario
National Service Dogs Ontario services a variety of clients. Examples of dogs they provide are:
- PTSD Dogs
- Autism Dogs
- Canine-assisted intervention dogs
- Companion Dogs
- Career Change Dogs
Options For Psychiatric Service Dog Organizations in Ontario
PTSD Service Dog Ontario
Canine Support Services is an option for service dog training services and has clients including adults and children living with Down syndrome, people living with fetal alcohol syndrome, global developmental disorders, PTSD, and several other psychiatric conditions. They have also worked with blind/visually impaired individuals and clients with mobility issues.
K9 Country Inn can help you to train your own dog to become your psychiatric service dog. They have wonderful team members there that can explain your rights as a service dog handler, and help you through training situations on the phone, through video, and/or in person.
National Service Dogs offers trained PTSD service dogs to veterans and first responders at no charge, who are living in Ontario, British Columbia, and Alberta.
Search Light Service Dogs is a registered not-for-profit organization, that trains and provides high-quality psychiatric service dogs to people who need them, and is only able to produce a limited number per year. There is no cost, but clients are expected to do some fundraising.
Les Chiens Togo is an organization in Quebec that transforms abandoned dogs into psychological service dogs and provides them to people living with PTSD, autism spectrum disorder, or generalized anxiety disorder. It is not clear whether they serve Ontario.