The Truth About Service Dog Vests

Service Dog Vests Are Not Required


  • While it makes sense that a service dog wear identification and/or a vest, this is not legally required in the United States.
  • There is no legitimate service dog certification or registration in the US.
  • Many service dogs do wear identification or a vest to make their status clear when entering places of business or other places where pets might be prohibited.
  • In recent times there has been a lot of discussion about ‘fake service dogs’ merely wearing a vest in order to travel or enter a place with a person who does not actually require a service dog at all.
  • Not only is this illegal, but it’s been making things more difficult for people who actually need and use a service dog.


Why a Service Dog Should Wear a Vest


  • If you do have a service dog, it is a good idea to make him identifiable to others so that they know he is clearly on the job.
  • Most often it’s a good idea for the dog to wear a backpack, harness or brightly colored vest that says ‘service dog’ or ‘do not pet’
  • Affection and interactions with members of the public can be distracting for the dog and could inadvertently cause potential negative implications to the dog user.
  • Your professional service dog trainer can help direct you to service dog vests and identification.