Can Australian Shepherds be emotional support dogs? 

Last updated on September 23, 2022

The Australian Shepherd is a versatile dog. Thanks to their intelligence, high energy, intuition, and love for work, these pups can perform various jobs. So, besides herding, the Aussie can work as a guard dog, drug detection dog, service dog, or search and rescue dog. Can Australian Shepherds be emotional support dogs? Read on to find out.

Can Australian Shepherds be emotional support dogs?

Yes, Australian Shepherds make excellent emotional support dogs. They possess all the qualities needed for this role. Aussies are intelligent, loving, and affectionate. Once they bond with an owner, that bond is unbreakable. These dogs leave to please their humans, and they never leave their side willingly.

Australian Shepherd Blue Sky Summer Meadow

The Australian Shepherd loves people. This dog fits nicely in every active family. However, they’re also good companions for lonely people. The Aussie possesses a high level of emotional intelligence. Hence, these pups will ease the life of a troubled person.

As an overly active, high-maintenance breed, the Aussie won’t leave much time to the owner to think about his condition. The Australian Shepherd comes equipped with some serious energy pack. This dog will require tons of activity and exercise. Thus, Aussies promote a healthy lifestyle for their owners.

Also, these pups like to cuddle; they’re kind and entertaining. Owning an Aussie is a fun experience that will help those in need. Australian Shepherds are also protective and will guard their owners at all times. They understand humans well. Thus, they can read our emotions and assist when needed.

What are emotional support animals?

An emotional support animals (ESA) is a companion prescribed by a licensed psychotherapist. Every animal that bonds with its owners are suitable to play the role of an emotional support animal. However, dogs are the best ESAs, due to their intelligence, love, and affection for humankind.

Every dog can be an emotional support animal, regardless of breed, sex, or age. However, some dogs play this role better than others. An ESAs is prescribed when a mental health specialist concludes it will help a person in need. Emotional Support animals can help with many disorders, such as anxiety, depression, phobias, panic attacks, or obsessive-compulsive disorder.

These animals are much more than regular pets. An excellent emotional support dog knows when the owner needs help. However, they differ from service dogs and therapy dogs. Therapy dogs are known to comfort patients in hospitals. They are not owned by the hospital but by caretakers. Once the shift is over, the therapy dog goes home with the custodian.

Service dogs, on the other hand, are specially trained canines. They’re not pets, and they have tons of rights other animals don’t. So, a service dog can accompany its owner in the library, in the market, or wherever the disabled person goes. Service dogs help physically disabled, blind, or deaf persons. They can pull a wheelchair, remind owners to take medications, or even call 911 if needed.

What makes the Australian Shepherd a good emotional support dog?

As I previously stated, the Australian Shepherd has all the traits needed to be an excellent emotional support dog. However, I will now elaborate on the most important ones. So, the Aussie is a good ESA because:

Aussies bond with their owners

The Australian Shepherd loves people. And people love the Australian Shepherd. So it’s no wonder the Aussie is now the 12th most popular breed in America, threatening to climb even higher on this list. And one of the reasons this dog gains fame is its ability to bond with owners. Once this connection exists, it is unbreakable. The Aussie will never leave its owner’s side and will be forever loyal, precisely what a disordered person needs.

Aussies have emotional intelligence.

Australian Shepherds are super intelligent, easily trained, and obedient. Aussies understand and obey tons of commands. However, besides being clever, Aussies also possess emotional intelligence. Hence, they are kind, affectionate, and able to understand our feelings. So, an Australian Shepherd will understand when its owner needs comforting, a trait that makes it a good ESA.

Aussies are active and entertaining

The Australian Shepherd is a very active dog. This pup has endless energy and never gets tired. Whether it’s work or play, the Aussie can go on and on without stopping. So, an Australian Shepherd will force its owner to be more active, thus promoting a healthy lifestyle. Also, Aussies are playful, easygoing, entertaining, and sometimes mischievous. So, this dog will provide fun and ease a troubled person’s life.

Aussies act on instincts

The Aussie is a herding dog. As such, it has the job to take care of the livestock. But, once this pup migrated to being a pet, it kept its instincts. And who will be the subject of consideration in lack of livestock? Its owner, of course. So, a typical Aussie will instinctively react to protect its human parent. A disordered person will find this helpful trait, knowing they can rely on their dog.

The Australian Shepherd is a fine emotional support dog

How to train an Australian Shepherd to be an emotional support dog?

There is no special training for an Aussie to become an emotional support animal. However, these dogs are kind and affectionate by nature. Hence, they are born ready to play the role of ESA.

However, I would advise socialization and obedience training. The Aussie can be aloof to strangers and other animals, so early socialization is necessary. On the other hand, Obedience training will teach the Aussie to obey commands.

Which dog is best for emotional support?

While all dogs can be emotional support animals, some are better than others. Certain breeds possess qualities that will change the lives of troubled people. According to my research, these are the top ten breeds to serve as an emotional support dog:

  • Poodle
  • Pug
  • Pomeranian
  • Beagle
  • Labrador Retriever
  • Chihuahua
  • Golden Retriever
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Corgi
  • Yorkshire Terrier

These dogs are unmatched in the field of emotional support. Affectionate, kind, and emotionally intelligent, they know how to aid, console, and comfort their owners.

Final words

Aussies tend to excel at everything. They work hard, entertain, protect, and please. These dogs will accompany the owner in all activities. The Aussie will join you whether you like to hike, walk, run, or swim. But if you want to lie down in front of the TV, the Aussie will cuddle with you. For a limited time, of course.

You may notice that the Aussie Shepherd is not on the top ten emotional support dogs list. However, this doesn’t mean the Aussie can’t do that job. It simply means that other dogs are better suited for that role. But when it comes to loyalty, love, and affection, no dog can match the majestic Australian Shepherd.

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