Defining a service animal

Confused about the difference between the three types of support animals?

Thursday, January 9, 2020 | NHS staff

Confused about the difference between the three types of support animals?

There are three types of support animals: service, therapy and emotional support. Knowing the difference – and determining which is best for you – can be difficult, but Therapy Animal Coalition released an easy-to-digest chart that breaks down how each category of animal is unique.

Service dogs are the only animal that is ADA covered and has rights to go into public establishments. They are specifically trained to provide a service to one person.

Therapy dogs give comfort to many people, such as those in hospitals, schools and nursing homes, while emotional support animals’ primary function is to provide assistance through companionship. 

If you are looking for a support animal, we suggest contacting your doctor.

You can see the chart below:

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