Dog Adoption

Appeal 2016Not all pups/dogs are suited to the role of being an Assistance Dog. Each dog is evaluated on a variety of temperament traits and if after appropriate remedial action there is no significant improvement then the dog may be deemed unsuitable. This doesn't mean it would not make a great family pet, and many re-assigned service dogs go on to be great animals in their own right. Some of the common reasons for a dog being seen as not suitable for the Assistance Dog role include:

  • Noise sensitivity and reactivity – sounds of machinery or cars back firing can disrupt some dogs ability to work effectively and happily in busier environments.

  • Visual suspicions – Working dogs have to deal with a variety of objects that may be unfamiliar – statues of animals and mannequins can often be viewed as threatening and cause extreme reactions in an unsuspecting dog that encounters such objects.A dog that displays a high level of ‘fear’ and fails to ‘recover’ within a short time span is likely to be withdrawn from the programme.

  • Willingness and motivation – the desire to work both for the pleasure of the job and for the handler are essential elements of Assistance Dog work.Dogs that do not find the job entertaining and enjoyable are less likely to be willing to promptly respond to commands and situations.adnz_icon_retina

  • Temperament – dogs that are too submissive may also have trouble working as a service dog as the level of their anxiety is too high for them to comfortably take on the role.Dogs that are too dominant or assertive may also be withdrawn as gaining respect and obedience from these dogs is often more difficult for the average person who requires a dog for assistance.

  • Health – sometimes a dog will develop a health condition which makes it unsuitable for an Assistance Dog role, this may mean it is not able to perform physical tasks or it may be a condition that makes it difficult for someone with a disability to manage. Often these health conditions do not have a significant impact on the dogs ability to make a great pet.

    If you would like to apply to adopt an Assistance Dog that has been withdrawn from our programme please visit our Facebook page .... In order for applications for adoption to remain current and valid, our new process is to advertise any withdrawn dogs on our ADNZ Facebook page when they become available and to examine suitability on an individual basis at that time.