When it comes to getting a dog, many people have breeds they’ve always dreamed of owning. However, if you require a service dog, not all breeds will be up to the task. So today, we’ll look at the gorgeous Siberian husky.
This breed’s piercing eyes and majestic wolf-like appearance have captivated many. But can this breed take on the role of a service dog?
In this article, we’ll explain what traits huskies have that are either good or bad for service work. We’ll also describe what makes a good service dog and see how the Siberian husky stacks up. If you’ve always wanted a husky but need a service dog, then keep reading.
What Is a Service Dog?
According to the Americans with Disabilities Act, service dogs are “individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities.” There are many different types of service dogs, such as guide dogs, medical alert dogs, mobility assistance dogs, hearing assistance dogs, and psychiatric service dogs.
Not only are these dogs trained in complex tasks that directly benefit their users, but they also have to be trained to remain focused while on the job. For example, service dogs have to be able to go into public places and ignore all of the sights and sounds around them so that they are always ready to step in when their handler needs help.
Not only do they need to be focused, but they also need to be well-behaved. A reactive dog would not be able to do their job and could also be a danger to those around them. As you can see, service dogs require a lot of training to become the near-perfect helpers they are known to be.
Because service dogs are vital to their owners’ well-being, they can go almost anywhere with their owners. They can even ride with them in the cabins of airplanes. They are also permitted to live with their owners, free of charge, in any rental, regardless of whether or not pets are allowed.
What Is an Emotional Support Animal?
Sometimes, people get emotional support animals (ESAs) and service dogs mixed up. This is understandable because both are considered assistance animals; however, ESAs and service dogs are very different.
While service dogs are specially trained to perform tasks, emotional support animals do not have to be trained at all. In fact, ESAs don’t even have to be dogs. The purpose of an ESA is to provide comfort to their owner, and they do so simply with their presence.
Because emotional support animals are not highly trained, they do not have nearly as many rights as service dogs do and are not allowed to enter businesses or ride in airplane cabins. However, they are protected by the Fair Housing Act and can live with their owners even in rentals that don’t allow pets.
Are Huskies Suitable for Service Work?
Just about any breed of dog could make a good service dog. What is important is their personality and behavior rather than their breed. This means a husky can be a good service dog.
However, huskies can also have traits that may make them ill-suited to service work. So let’s look at the husky’s good and bad qualities regarding suitability for service work.
Qualities That Make Huskies Suitable for Service Work
Here are some qualities that huskies have that would help them excel in service work.
Friendliness and Confidence
Service dogs often need to go in public places, so it is important that they are friendly and not reactive toward strangers. Huskies are great with strangers, other dogs, and even children. Since they love people, they tend to be quite confident even in bustling areas.
Huskies are known to be reasonably intelligent; they can even often figure out how to escape or dig themselves out of enclosures. Moreover, because they are so clever, they do indeed have the capacity to learn complex service tasks.