What is a Guide Dog?

Guide Dogs are a type of service dog specifically trained to assist a person who is blind or visually impaired. In order to understand a Guide Dog's role, first it is helpful to know more about service dogs. Take a look at the chart below. Click a circle to learn more.

Service Dogs

Service Dogs are task

trained to help a person with a

disability. This means they perform

a specific job or behavior to help mitigate the impacts a disability has on a person's daily life. They are allowed in all public places, including housing and transportation, because of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Guide Dogs are one type of service dog.

Therapy Dog

Therapy Dogs are dogs that have

undergone specific training in order to be

out in public places with select populations. Agencies able to provide this training will also provide details regarding certifications, training processes and locations that are appropriate. These dogs are not granted access to locations due to any legislature.

Emotional Support

Emotional Support

Animals can be any type of pet.

ESA's provide support and comfort to one

or more members in their household. While there are not specific criteria for training, ESA's are given protections through the Fair Housing Act. While they cannot go out in public places, they can live in non-pet friendly residences. Documentation from a physician is required.

For more information from the ADA distinguishing between these types of dogs, click here.

If you are having any trouble accessing this information, you can find a text-only version of this page here.

Learn more about the work a Guide Dog is trained to do. These tasks help provide safe and independent travel for blind or visually impaired handlers.

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