Service dogs are working animals, not a pet. They require a great deal of specialized training to learn tasks that will mitigate their handler’s disability such as obstacle avoidance for those with sight impairments, alerting to sounds for those with hearing impairments, retrieving dropped items for those with mobility impairments, alerting to an oncoming anxiety attack for those with PTSD or a myriad of other tasks which are outlined at http://www.iaadp.org/tasks.html
Service dogs have legally defined public access rights, which means they are allowed to accompany their disabled handler in all areas where members of the public are allowed to go. Additional information on this law can be found at this link http://www.ada.gov/service_animals_2010.htm.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO TRAIN A DOG?
Costs vary from dog to dog and state to state, but generally a working number for a professionally-trained service dog is about $25,500.00. How do we arrive at that number?
ACQUISITION OF DOG: $1,200.00
Care & Boarding of Dog: $4,800 (8months boarding @ 30 days/month x $20.00/day)
Training (approx. 8 months @ $2,000/mo): $16,000.00
Veterinary Care: $1,000.00
Equipment (leashes, vests, collars, training aids, etc): $500.00
Misc. Costs (admin fees, incidentals, transportation, specialty items, veteran placement equipment/needs, etc): $2,000.00