retired service dogs

The Service and Therapy Dog forum is for all service and therapy dogs regardless of whether or not their status is legally defined by federal or state law, how they are trained, or whether or not they are "certified." Posts questioning or disputing a person's need for a service or therapy dog, the validity of a person's service or therapy dog, or the dog's ability to do the work of a service or therapy dog are not permitted in this forum. Please keep discussions fun, friendly, and helpful at all times.

Morgan (In- Loving- Memory Of)

Until there's- none rescue one
Barked: Tue Mar 27, '07 3:29pm PST 
Do most training facilities for service dogs take the dogs back once they retire if the owner can't keep them? I work with a rescue and last night I got a call from a former adopter and her friend has a hearing dog that is now 9 and the dog is not able to keep up with her in her daily life. She is due to get a new service dog soon and is needing to find a home for her current one, because she is not able to afford two dogs. I didn't even think about asking if the place where she is getting these dogs from will take them back. I am planning on calling her tonight and asking her more questions, but was wondering what most policies were with service dogs when they retire.

There's no such- thing as to much- food!
Barked: Tue Mar 27, '07 3:33pm PST 
It really depends on the facility - Also some people will rescue dogs and then train them as their service dog, but it sounds like this lady is getting them from a facility. Some of them will keep a list of people who want to adopt a retired service dog or a puppy that doesn't work out in their program, so it'd sure ask her if she's talked to them about this and see if they'd be willing to take it back and find it a new home.
Otto - Registered- Service Dog

ADI cert. - the only one- that matters!
Barked: Wed Mar 28, '07 8:15am PST 
It does depend on the school...

If the school is a registered charity they almost certainly have arrangements for placing retired SDs. If it's a not-for-profit it's less certain and if it's a for-profit, I think you are on your own.

Sabrina- 2000~2012

To break- injustice we- must break- silence
Barked: Wed Mar 28, '07 12:04pm PST 
It definately depends on the organization! I think you should ask her to check if they will accept the older dog back, because they might. But if they don't, it would be great if you could help I'm sure! I trained Sabrina myself and will likely train my next service dog myself as well, which means that when Sabrina retires I'll still be taking care of her. I am going to probably keep her as a pet once she retires, but not everyone is able to or wants to do that. Retired service dogs are often happiest in homes where they still have some type of job to do, so you might encourage whomever adopts the dog to consider therapy work, rally or some other way the dog can feel productive.
Nolte (Retired Guide Dog)

Guide dog work- is a joyous- thing!
Barked: Wed Mar 28, '07 9:44pm PST 
I agree with everyone so far. Depends on the organization.

I've had guide dogs from Guiding Eyes for the Blind in Yorktown Hts NY and my current dog Nolte is from The Seeing Eye in Morristown NJ.

Both schools will take a retired dog back and re-home it. The waiting list for retired guide dogs is extensive, and there's often up to a two to three year wait.

Many people keep their retired dogs as pets, but for many it's just not possible. Many people retire their dogs to family or friends.

Karen Ann & Kanine Krew