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Service Animals

Community Member

Okay so hi im new here,

Basically I have a lot of issues with my anxiety and it’s effecting my day to day life, I have panic attacks in class and in public, I have had days off because the thought of going out made me sob (and usually does), I get overwhelmed really easily and as a result shut down and won’t be able to function for a good while after. What’s worse is that sometimes my way of responding to these things isn’t the healthiest (things such as scratching or digging my nails into my palms or skin). In short it’s an issue. And a little while ago I went down a rabbit hole and found that you can get service dogs to help with this kind of thing, such as interrupting these sh behaviours, alerting to oncoming attacks, helping owner through attack, getting the owner to a safe spot ect ect. However I am consistently stuck in a loop of convincing myself that it’s not that bad and I don’t need one, and that I only want one for attention and that I’m faking it. But at the same time I genuinely think this would help me. I only see a therapist once a month and our session has just passed so I don’t have anyone to talk with about it. Before chatting with my parents and bringing up the idea I want to make sure that I qualify for one and know as much info as possible. So basically my question is:

Does this sound like enough of a reason do try to get one of these animals? And how would I begin the process of getting one if the answer is yes?

Any help would be amazing,

Noah 🙂

3 Replies 3

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hello Noah, I'm sure service dogs would be in high demand, as I know not everyone with bad eyesight are allowed to have an eye-seeing dog and with your condition it would need to go through interviews with those concerned and perhaps a psychiatrist report before any decision could be made.

May be if you could have a dog you were very close to might give you some relief.


Dear -Noah-,
Firstly, welcome to the forums we are so glad that you found your way to this supportive and welcoming community. We hope that you find ideas, options and support from the shared experiences and knowledge of all our members. Please feel free to express yourself and your concerns openly and without fear of judgement as this is a safe space.
We are sorry to hear that you feel the urge to self-harm and will always encourage seeking a positive alternative, such as your courage to seek support and advice here. Although a service dog may be specialized to duties for individuals with vision impairment or blindness. You may wish to consider Geoff’s advice of possibly looking into getting a pet as a companion, as the loving bond you will share would assist with helping you get through those negative periods.
Please remember if you feel you need to talk through how you are feeling or honestly do just need a chat, please contact Beyond Blue either via phone 1300 22 4636 or web chat: http://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/get-immediate-support
If you have not engaged with them before we would also recommend Kids helpline on 1800 55 1800 or at https://kidshelpline.com.au/ .
We would also like to suggest Lifeline on 13 11 14 or at https://www.lifeline.org.au/crisis-chat/
If at any point those thoughts of self-harm become overwhelming and you believe you may harm yourself, or you no longer feel safe we urge you to contact emergency services on 000.
We hope that you find the support and direction that you are seeking on the forums. Once again, we are so glad you have re-joined the forums and we hope that you feel welcomed back into the community. 
Warm regards
Sophie M

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi -Noah-,

Welcome to the forums and thank you for joining us. I'm sorry to hear how much you're struggling with your anxiety.

Getting a service dog in Australia is not easy and a bit of a lengthy process. Unfortunately in the US you can get a service animal super easily, even a chicken 🙂

What I would recommend is searching "psychiatric service dog (and your state)" Each state has different laws and procedures involved in getting one, so this way you can have a look around in the right state for you.

There's also another post here which is a bit older but still really helpful. A wave to Geoff who posted some great services there too.


Best of luck,