Questions regarding applying for a service dog with SBF
What steps are involved to Apply for a service dog?
- Go to our “Apply for a Service Dog” page. Complete and submit the initial application form or you can call us at (623) 218-6486 if you have any questions regarding applying for a service dog.
- We will e-mail or mail a formal application to you. This will include an application to be filled out by you, a letter of diagnosis from your care provider, two letters of reference to be filled in & signed by individuals, and a medical release of information form. SBF also requires a copy of your DD 214.
- Your paperwork will be submitted for review.
- SBF representatives will perform a home inspection and conduct a personal interview with you and your family (if any).
- Final decision on acceptance
Do I need to be an Arizona resident to be accepted into the program?
No! We consider all active military and veterans of any U.S. military branch for acceptance. However, you will need to be in Arizona for the training sessions AND be responsible to find housing during the training period of up to 6 months.
How long does the application and acceptance process take?
From the point of you having all your paperwork submitted, it takes about 2-4 weeks to know of your acceptance status. If you are accepted and have your own dog, you typically begin training within 2 weeks of acceptance.
If we are partnering you with a dog, it takes approximately 1 month to find your dog and begin training from the point of acceptance. However, this can vary depending on different circumstances.
How much will your program cost the veteran?
There will be absolutely no fees to the veteran during the placement and training period. We are committed to that.
The only costs to the veteran would be transportation, housing and their own meals if they have to relocate to Arizona during the training period.
All of our dogs will be spayed, neutered, vaccinated and receive all recommended preventative medications prior to placement. All veterinary services, most food and supplies will be at no charge to the veteran during the training process.
Following graduation the veteran will be responsible for food costs and basic care while reduced veterinary fees will be offered through a group of volunteer veterinary hospitals in Arizona.
What is the difference between a Service Dog and a Therapeutic Companion Dog?
A Certified Service Dog is allowed by law to enter public places such as the veteran’s work place, restaurants, buses, stores etc. These are rights set forth in the American Disability Act (ADA). So a service dog is intended to accompany the veteran anywhere they chose to go.
A Therapeutic Companion Dog or Emotional Support Animal will not be allowed to enter most public businesses other than airplane cabins or live in non-pet friendly housing. Training will be primarily for obedience and behavior on board an airplane.
Which Dog is Best For Me?
The Certified Service Dog is for the more advanced cases of PTSD where an individual needs the medical benefit of their dog on a constant basis. For example, the dog would be with the veteran while at work or in school.
The Therapeutic Companion Dog or Emotional Support Animal will benefit the veteran while primarily at home.