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The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) defines a service dog as “a dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability.” Disabilities include mental or physical impairments that affect an individual’s ability to perform one or more major life activities (walking, seeing, etc.). Service dogs are trained to guide and assist such individuals so that they can lead happier, healthier lives.

Because service dogs play such a key role in the life of disabled individuals, they are protected by the law. Places of residence, employment, and commercial facilities cannot discriminate against disabled individuals with service animals. If you are wondering how to get a service dog, you can either purchase a fully trained dog or purchase a service puppy and train it.

Dog Training Elite is proud to have some of the highest rated service dog trainers near you.
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In-Home Dog Trainers Near You in your local area

Is A Service Dog The Same As A Therapy Dog?


Many types of working dogs increase the quality of life for their handlers. The three main categories of working dogs are service animal, therapy animal, and emotional support animal. Each category covers different areas of support and different levels of protection under the law.

  • Service Animal

    As mentioned above, service animals assist individuals with disabilities. Depending on the person’s needs, the service animal learns how to perform certain tasks. Guide dogs, for example, help blind individuals safely navigate their environment. Seizure response dogs respond to their handlers when the individual is having a seizure. Service animals are highly trained and specialized, and they are also offered the most protection under the law compared to therapy or emotional support animals.

    Dogs are not the only kinds of service animals - miniature horses, pigs, and monkeys are often trained to support individuals with disabilities!

  • Therapy Animal

    Therapy dogs provide comfort and improve the mental well-being of individuals in hospitals, hospice care, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, and more. These dogs must have a friendly, calm demeanor and be comfortable when handled by strangers. Therapy dogs are not trained to perform specific tasks, but they must be obedient and well-mannered. Therapy animals are permitted in some areas where pets are not, but they have fewer protections than service animals. All therapy dogs must be certified before they can offer their services to the community.

  • Emotional Support Animal

    Emotional support dogs relieve loneliness, anxiety, depression, and other symptoms of mental health disorders. They provide comfort to their handlers, but they are not trained to perform specific tasks. Most emotional support animals are sensitive to the emotional changes of their handler and will stay close by at all times. Emotional support animals are not protected by the ADA, but residential buildings must permit emotional support animals.

Our Balanced Theory

We base our training around the "Classical Conditioning" model (a.k.a. "Pavlovian" or "respondent conditioning"). This includes developing conditioned or automatic reflexes to commands. In its simplest form (after proper conditioning), when the owner says "sit," the dog automatically sits without thinking about it. Our unique techniques ensure our program is a success no matter what behavior we encounter.


Dog Training Elite is the top company near you that uses professional positive dog training methods.
Empowering Owners

We empower owners to train so their dog knows who to obey at all times.

Personalized

We deal with problem behaviors on a personal basis.

Environment Specific

We train wherever issues tend to arise (i.e. jogging, park, home).

Supportive

We support owners in the off-hours (when training is "not in session").

Involved

We work with all members of the household.

Simplified & Customized

We plan training around the owner's schedule and require only 15 min/day follow-up practice.

Continued Training

Additional programs / group sessions offered after in-home training.

Lifetime Investment

We follow up & are invested in the owner's success long-term.

Satisfaction Ratings

Our high client satisfaction rating sets us apart from competitors.

See Our Pricing

Dog Training Elite is proud to have the highest rated service dog training programs near you.

What Can Service Dogs Do?


Service dogs are a great help to disabled individuals thanks to their incredible ability to perform highly specialized tasks, like opening doors, switching lights on and off, assisting with balance and stability, guiding, pulling wheelchairs, answering phones and making calls, finding objects or places, unloading and loading items, clearing rooms, finding help, and many more. Service dogs improve the lives of disabled individuals by increasing their autonomy.

Individuals with certain diseases and disorders can benefit from a highly trained service dog. Dogs have an incredible sense of smell and they can detect the chemical changes associated with oncoming seizures and increases in blood pressure. Alert service dogs alert their handler to these situations to prevent a life-threatening emergency. Alert dogs also help those with extreme allergies detect potential allergens in food.

Disabled or epileptic individuals are more prone to emergencies than the average person. Service dogs are trained to alert their handler to a potential emergency, and alert surrounding individuals to an active emergency. Service dogs can also call for help on pre-programmed phones.

Service dogs trained to assist handlers with severe anxiety or depression will perform specific tasks that reduce the potential for panic attacks or self-harm attempts. Such tasks include deep-pressure therapy, tactile stimulation, alerting, clearing rooms, blocking strangers from approaching, and more. Service dogs trained to assist those with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) have greatly improved the lives of many veterans .

Service dogs also make a big impact on the lives of children with autism. Children with autism are often prone to meltdowns, have trouble communicating, and are quick to run off or become easily lost. Service dogs prevent and mediate all of these behaviors to provide a higher quality of life for children with autism and their families.

As autism is a spectrum disorder, each child has varying needs of assistance. Autism service dogs perform the following tasks:

  • Tracking
    Children with autism often wander away, and a parent’s worst fear is turning their back for just a moment and then discovering their child is gone. Autism service dogs will track the child if this ever happens.
  • Tethering
    This task minimizes wandering, which is common in public settings. The child is tethered to the service dog’s leash or harness, preventing him or her from wandering away.
  • Behavior Interruption
    Repetitive and ritualistic behaviors are typical of autistic children, as are meltdowns when the child becomes overstimulated. Autism service dogs recognize these negative behaviors and redirect the child’s attention when they start. A simple paw or nudge is all it takes to prevent a meltdown.

From physically assisting disabled individuals to reducing the symptoms of mental illness, service dogs are incredible companions. If you want to get a service dog, please contact us for more information!

We help your dog become a valued companion and beloved member of the family. Read what our customers have to say and then give us a call!

They are absolutely the best. My German Shepherd puppy was a real demon when he first went in, and they were able to transform him into a wonderful service pet that is well behaved and listens. They truly know their craft, and I absolutely recommend them. You’ll begin to see the difference right away and your dog.
— Rodolfo Franco
Posted August 5th 2022
google
Everything about Dog Training Elite was great!!!! The staff are awesome with my dog Cyrus. This disabled veteran recommends DTE to anyone looking to train their pup!!!
— Chris Asher
Posted August 5th 2022
google
They were great! My dog loved working with all of them. They eased my anxiety about the e-collar and everything. They definitely are the best trainers I’ve seen in a while!
— neida garcia
Posted August 4th 2022
google
We brought our German Shepherd puppy to Dog Training Elite and couldn't be happier. We had Geneva as our trainer who is very knowledgeable and answered all of our questions and made sure we knew what we needed to work on as well. We saw results after the first day too.
— Shannon Sixkiller
Posted August 1st 2022
google
if you are looking for a miracle like we were Dog Training Elite is the place to go-they changed our life for the better!! Geneva is so on top of communicating and telling you honestly how your dog is doing. you get videos and pictures of what your dog is doing everyday. I felt so safe leaving my doggo in their hands. You can have personal time with the trainer and your dog so you know exactly what your dog is learning and how you can keep up the work at home. Dog Training Elite has the best staff, i felt comfortable talking to everyone there because they are so kind and you can tell they have you and your dogs best interest in mind. TAKE YOUR DOG TO DTE!!!! we love everything about them and would recommend them to anyone and everyone who is wanting to get their dog trained :)
— Megan Nichols
Posted July 27th 2022
google
This is an amazing business! Not only did I see incredible results, but my dog was so cared for by all the people here! I would highly recommend this for all your dog training needs. They are very good and what they do and I can tell they love the dogs so much. This is hands down the best center out there.
— cc Si
Posted July 25th 2022
google
Fantastic trainers and proven methodology. We have a 1 1/2 year old 80 lbs Sheepadoodle. Within about 6 weeks, he changed from a leash-puller to a full on off leash dog. We hike and run with him off leash and enjoy walking with him a lot more (I climbed a 14er Mountain with him yesterday fully off leash). Life changing for us. Highly recommend.
— Arun Sundar
Posted July 23rd 2022
google
Amazing dog trainers Geneva and Adakias they had my German Shepard well behaved in one week and helping me by then end of the program. I would so recommend it to anyone needing help with their pets
— Amber Lashmit
Posted July 22nd 2022
google
I was really nervous about finding a good company to train my sons service dog & spent months researching. Dog Training Elite was the only one I found that would do at home training. I'm a hands on/observe learner. It was so great to have Melanie & Salena come to my home, show me exactly what to do, & practiced with me until I felt comfortable. They explained the process & answered my questions with kindness. They were always right on time & eager to work with us. They also worked really well with Drake. I feel he did so much better being at his home with me for his basic training. They also answered emails/texts within the same day. They worked well with me to figure out a plan that would work best based on my sons special needs/disability. Drake has now graduated from his basic training & we're excited to start group trainings. Highly recommend Dog Training Elite if you want convenient & professional dog training no matter what services you are looking for.
— Rose Carter
Posted July 20th 2022
google
Dog training Elite has been awesome for our family. Our dog Koa has been going since he was 9 weeks old. Koa has learned so much and grown so much because of their training. We can’t wait to see our pup graduate into a service dog. They are flexible with our schedules and work with us even though we live about an hour and a half south. They have been amazing.
— Brittany Lay
Posted July 14th 2022
google
Dog Training Elite was a great decision for us. We have a pitbull mix named Luna and went with the Platinum package. We just finished our 7 private sessions! Jeff has been wonderful with training. A true professional and GREAT at training. Does the job and does it well. We are super happy with Evan too and are confident that all Dog Elite trainers have the experience and skill! Luna is ready for Group lessons and we can’t wait to see her progress in the coming months!
— Kristen McGee
Posted July 13th 2022
google
My wife decided to surprise me by bringing home three Malinois Puppies. I called Dog Elite Training Because I quickly got overwhelmed with these high-energy dogs. Can you imagine how crazy it was for me, a simple dog owner, trying to train 3 Malinois puppies? Dog Elite came to my rescue. Lexi, the trainor, has been amazing with the Malys. They are so much more obedient. They respond to my commands. It’s amazing. Everyone who meets our dogs are so impressed.
— Joseph Vijungco
Posted July 12th 2022
google
My daughter loves this place. Good job Geneva!
— Rebecca Baker
Posted July 9th 2022
google
They are the best trainer we have ever had. They are training our pup to be a service dog. I have never had such a well behaved animal.
— Nicole Foster
Posted July 7th 2022
google
DTE is the only training method that has worked with my 1.5 year old stubborn lab. It has brought order back to our house and made her an all around better pup. The team is professional and knowledgable, I would recommend them to anyone!
— Laura Bickel
Posted July 5th 2022
google
Had a great experience with DTE! I was a little skeptical of the method at first, but we stuck to the program and did the homework as instructed. We are lightyears away from where we started with our dog in just 2 short months. Looking forward to the group trainings to get us to our end goal.
— Cole Harte
Posted July 1st 2022
google
Jeff is been great. He truly cared about Obi and teach him and me the best way to train him. 100% recommended
— mchaverri86
Posted June 30th 2022
google
Jason helped me with my 2 Dogs. I have a Pit mix that was reactive and is now no longer reactive and does great off leash, along with a Hound mix that was near impossible to get to listen to simple commands that now can be off leash and listens very well.
— Rick M
Posted June 27th 2022
google
The basic obedience camp was 1000% worth the money and time. My golden doodle is basically a completely different dog. Erin (the trainer) was so kind, patient and let me pick her brain about more training tips after the camp was finished. Would do this again in a heartbeat!
— Hollie Steed
Posted June 25th 2022
google
Great training, I wouldn't go anywhere else!
— C S
Posted June 23rd 2022
google

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Proud Sponsor of The Malinois Foundation

At Dog Training Elite, we believe that Service Dogs save lives. It is our mission to make these life-saving companions available to our Veterans, First Responders, Women Survivors, and Children with Medical Needs. Whether it be for PTSD, Mobility Support, or Special Needs, Dog Training Elite work's with the Malinois Foundation to heal and empower these individuals with a specialized service animal, a partner in life, and a new best friend.

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Dog Training Elite - AKC STar Puppy Instructor
Dog Training Elite - Canine Good Citizen Evaluator
Dog Training Elite - AKC Community Canine
Dog Training Elite - PRTA Pro
Dog Training Elite - IACP Member
Dog Training Elite - AKC Member

Dog Training Elite is the top professional service dog training company in your local area.

How Do I Get A Service Dog?


If you are wondering how to get a service dog, there are a couple of different approaches. Some service dogs are purchased outright, fully trained. Or a compatible dog is selected and trained from an early age. Training a dog from the start is the best option, especially for those with specialized needs.

Training a dog to perform service responsibilities must start from day one. Only certain breeds are suited to service work, and breeders put a lot of time into raising puppies to be service animals. Once you have purchased a service puppy, additional training is necessary to prepare your puppy for life as a service dog. This is a complicated process that involves various steps. Dog Training Elite makes getting a service dog easier with our service dog training program .

Our talented trainers can help select puppies that are prepared for a life of service from well-respected breeders. When these puppies enter the service dog training program they are closely monitored for behavior and temperament and can be fully obedience trained by the age of six months. These puppies undergo extensive socialization and additional training to ensure they are well-suited for service and therapy needs including specialized service training alongside the new handler.

This program is ideal for handlers who want to take part in the developmental years and extensive training of their service puppy.

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