Dogs in Service to Others

golden retriever

Guide dogs/service dogs

September is a month’s long celebration of the extraordinary work of guide dogs and service dogs.

When I started thinking about it, there are a number of different service dogs. Guide dogs is the specific name for dogs used to guide individuals with an impairment in their vision. Service dogs are any dogs that do a service for a human with a disability. They may be hearing service animals, wheelchair assist animals, seizure alert animals or even PTSD dogs.

No matter what service they are tasked to perform, they start training at a very young age and only about 75% graduate. While the most popular breeds tend to be labrador retriever, golden retriever, and german shepard, I have seen a variety of other dog breeds utilized. If they have their vest on, that means they are working and no matter how cuddly and cute they are, it’s not the time to run up and pet them. They are working for their human guardian and need to be vigilant of the surroundings or any physical issues the human may be presented with.

Most programs require volunteers to help train these dogs. Consider volunteering or donating to ones in your area. There are a couple of places that I know of in the Central NY/capitol region.

ClearPath for veterans in Chittenango NY

Freedom Guide dogs in Cassville, NY

Other dogs in Service

Besides the service animals for people with disabilities, there are also therapy dogs and emotional support animals.

Therapy animals usually go through a specific training, but not as intense as service animals. These animals are often brought into nursing homes or hospitals to give a multitude of people a chance to cuddle and pet them. they often bring cheer to these people who may be facing some difficulties.

Emotional support animals are animals that aid their human in emotional issues by providing comfort. They do not have special training and may not even be dogs.

While these may be some of the animals used in service to individuals. just think about all the dogs that are a service in other ways. Bomb sniffing dogs, canine patrol, even bed bug sniffing dogs.

We certainly put our dogs to work.

It’s an International circle!

Join the fun! This group of International Professional Pet Photographers bring you information on our weekly topics. While we focus on one broad subject, we may each have a different spin on it or provide you with additional information from our world of pet photography. Follow the next link to view how the next amazing photographer tackles this weeks challenge.  Follow each link at the end of each blog until you return to me. Then you have successfully completed our blog circle. Enjoy!

+++++ NOW head over to:

Erin Schwartzkopf of Erin Kathleen Photography in Wyoming explains what being a Full Service Photographer means to her by showing you what your custom photo experience with her will look like.

Meet Coco

What a model! This girl is friendly, affectionate and loyal. Her foster says she loves to play, but would be just as happy curled up with you. Please contact Friends of Second chance

Friends of Second Chance Canine Adoption Shelter
6660 E. Seneca Turnpike
Jamesville, NY 13078
315-435-5584


Capture your journey with your pet. Nancy Kieffer is a Certified Professional Pet, Equine and Nature Photographer Through Professional Photographers of America (PPA). Nancy serves Central New York, the Adirondacks and Beyond.  Capture how you share your life with your pet! It may be a vacation adventure or curled up on the couch with you. Travel assignments welcomed.

2 Comments

  1. Nicole on September 10, 2022 at 11:03 am

    Great post. Dogs are truly amazing!

  2. Angela Schneider on September 9, 2022 at 9:12 am

    It never ceases to amaze me how our animals enrich and guide the lives of humans.

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