It’s time for college, and you have everything planned out- what you will bring, how you will decorate your dorm room, who your roommates will be, and what life will be like. You’re also planning on bringing one of your favourite family support – your dog. Remember, many dorm colleges and private apartments don’t allow dogs at all. But if you are one of the students who need a dog not as a pet but as an auxiliary aid, read on and consider all of these factors before you pack up their toys.

Dogs As Auxiliary Aids

Under Equality Act 2010 (EA), persons with disabilities have important rights to own and keep a guide or service dog to help them with day-to-day activities as well as supporting their independence and confidence. Assistance dogs help their owners with neurological disorders, mobility problems, hearing or vision loss, mental health issues and many more.

These kind of support dogs are professionally trained and highly disciplined. They are calm and quiet next to their owner and will unlikely roam freely or foul in public places.

If you’re a student who owns a furry aid for medical reasons, contact and coordinate with the college or university before you show up with your dog is of high importance. If the educational institution doesn’t allow even service dogs, you have to live off-campus and find a private housing landlord that permits pets.

Taking Care Of Assistance Dogs

You will be responsible for the care and well-being of your assistance dog. Read on for some tips on how to care for your furry aid.

  • Automatic dog feeder – If you can’t bring your service aid to the university premises, your dog’s feeding schedule shouldn’t be neglected. Invest in a quality automatic dog feeder that you can set to feed your pet at the same time every day. Check out this link for a compiled list of the top feeders out there
  • Maintain a balanced diet – You and others can’t give any food to your dog because they have a carefully balanced diet. A change in their diet may affect their health and the way they work.
  • Microchipped and Register – It is best to microchipped and register your dog in case it is lost or in cases that you will have to show proof that they are professionally trained support dogs.
  • Toys – Assistance dogs are perfect buddies because they are trained to sit or lie quietly where it’s placed if you need to leave the room without it. However, you can still give them toys but not the noisy ones.
  • Physical Exercises – Schedule long walks or romps in a local park. If your schedule doesn’t allow for it, consider paying a professional service to help you out, or you could also ask a trusted friend or roommate. You can also do indoor exercises like lunging for treats, treadmill, or exercising with dog stability balls.
  • Mental Exercises – Brain games offer a workout for your service dog, too. Plus, it improves the dog’s focus, frustration tolerance, and decision-making ability. You can use a snuffle mat and play free shaping games like the Box Game.
  • Keep it clean- Your dog deserves to live in a nice, clean environment. Make sure that you bring along cleaning and storage items to keep your room as clutter-free as possible. A quality vacuum cleaner is a must when your dog is living in a smaller space, especially if they are a breed that sheds more than others.

Assistance dogs for college students can help them reach their full potential and complete a degree. Just bear in mind to check with the local authority or university for other possible restrictions regarding dog-ownership.