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How To Get An Emotional Support Dog Certification

Animals can give happiness and companionship to people. Animals can also provide emotional support to people who have emotional or mental health concerns or disabilities. These animal companions are known as ESAs or Emotional Support Animals. They are not just pets. They can provide therapeutic benefits that can help alleviate at least one aspect of your health concerns or disabilities.

Any animals can be an emotional support animal. But dogs are the most common type of ESA. This furry friend is called ESD or Emotional Support Dog. With so many issues with emotional support animals when you want to travel and board on a plane or live in “no pets” college dormitory, apartment, or housing, how can you obtain a legitimate emotional support animal certification?

Here’s all you need to know about emotional support for animals and their roles. If you want to learn how to get valid Emotional Support Dog certification, or how to get a dog certified as an emotional support animal, you’d be surprised to find out the process is simple.

esa certificate dog
certificate for emotional support dog

An Emotional Support Dog or ESD is a pet or animal prescribed by an authorized therapist to provide a therapeutic health benefit to those suffering from emotional or mental health issues. No registration or licensing of an emotional support dog is required. You just need an Emotional Support Animal (ESA) letter written a licensed mental health doctor on their letterhead stating that you have an emotional or mental disability and that the emotional support dog is vital to your well-being. Any dog could be an emotional support dog. No specialized training is needed for them. The only distinction between your emotional support dog and a pet is an ESA letter from the prescribing licensed mental health doctor. Emotional support dogs are not obligated to be certified, but owners choose to certify and carry an ID for their emotional support dog and let the dog wear an Emotional Support Animal vest or harness because it makes traveling with their emotional support dog easier.

If you have emotional or mental disabilities, you can qualify for an emotional support dog certification. You may be eligible for an ESA dog certification if you suffer from one or more of the mental health concerns listed below.

  • Anxiety
  • General Anxiety Disorder
  • Depression
  • PTSD
  • Stress-Induced Situations
  • Social Shyness
  • Aerophobia (the fear of flying)
  • Agoraphobia (the fear of leaving home)

The American Disability Act (ADA) definition will be used by your licensed mental health doctor to help you determine your condition and whether you qualify for an emotional support dog.

In shelters and rescues, or from a legitimate breeder, you can find emotional support dogs. Before or after you get a dog, you can get your ESA letter. No specific training is required for an emotional support dog. ESD must be under your control and consistently well-behaved and cannot cause aggravation or harm at home or on the aircraft.

An ESA letter is generally referred to as an Emotional Support Dog Certificate. You need an ESA letter from a mental health specialist or doctor recommending that you need an animal to help you emotionally.

Steps On How To Certify An Emotional Support Dog

An Emotional Support Animal Letter must include:

  • Written on the letterhead of your authorized mental health doctor
  • The license number of the licensed mental health doctor
  • Signature and date of the licensed mental health doctor
  • Note: The ESA letter is valid for one year only.

Having an ESA letter will guarantee that you will be able to take advantage of the Air Carrier Access Act and Fair Housing Act without paying extra emotional support dog fees. You can search for a local specialist in your area when getting a dog certified as an emotional support animal or go online to a website such as

MyESADoctor.com

Your emotional support dog doesn’t need to be “certified” or carry an “emotional support dog certification.” The only requirement is an ESA letter from your licensed mental health professional stating your emotional support dog provides you necessary companionship during times of need.

It can be an exhausting experience to deal with the registration process of getting an ESA dog certification on your own. We want to assist you by providing you the information, resources, and items you need to secure and provide for your emotional support animal.

Rights of Emotional Support Dogs vs. Service Dogs

While emotional support dogs provide therapeutic support, they are not service dogs and do not have the same rights. While a service dog, like a guide dog, is generally permitted wherever the public is allowed, emotional support dogs are not. So they cannot accompany their owners into restaurants or shopping malls, for example.

Due to the lack of appropriate training and certifying for emotional support dogs, they don’t have as many entitlements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). However, they do have some rights, including:

  • Fair Housing Act (FHA) – According to this act, it is permissible for a person with emotional support animals to have them in their homes irrespective of whether there is currently no pet rule. Emotional Support Animals are protected, and property supervisors are required without discrimination to let that person with emotional support animal rent on their property.
  • Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) – According to this act, a person with emotional support animals are allowed to have them on aircraft, and they must be accommodated by the airline.

Having an ESA letter will guarantee that you will be able to take advantage of the Air Carrier Access Act and Fair Housing Act without paying extra emotional support dog fees. You can search for a local specialist in your area when getting a dog certified as an emotional support animal or go online to a website such as

Although there are a few similarities between emotional support dogs and service dogs, the contrasts between the two are essential. Emotional Support Dogs provide the necessary support for many people with specific psychological health problems. However, since emotional support dogs lack appropriate training and certification, they don’t have as many privileges as service dogs appear to be. But under the Fair Housing Act and Air Carrier Access Act, they are protected. You will be permitted to bring your emotional support dog into the lodge of an aircraft at no additional cost to you and permitted into “no pets” policy for college dorms/apartments/housing as well. You need an ESA letter from your licensed mental health doctor to allow your pet instead of searching for a dog that will give you the passionate assistance you need. This could spare you time and money