Smaller Dog for DAD?

I'm wondering if anyone has or knows of a DAD which is a smaller breed and not a Lab? I have been thinking about this and have heard that some smaller breeds can be trained as DAD. I would like to try possibly training myself also.

Breed is not the important factor. Desire to work and the ability to distinct smells is. I'm betting a Beagle would be a great DAD. Their brain is in their nose, the poor things. Jack Russell and similar small "earth/dig" dogs. And any mix breed who has a nose drive.

Hi Paula,

I didn't think of beagles- we had a beagle when I was growing up- she was great- but they need a lot of territory to roam to be really happy. I would love a border collie too, but they have similar types of needs... a jack russel may be a possibility. I have to figure out if my two cats will even accept a dog also. I am going to check for other nose breed dogs. Thanks for that Idea! There is someone in my area who does DAD training also- I will try to consult with him.

I would really like to get a shelter dog also if possible.

Here is a Chinese Crested:

Thanks Jennifer- is he your dog? He is gorgeous! What a cutie pie...

I don't think breed is all that important. My DAD is a golden retriever/lab mix, but I have seen many other types of dogs. (I work with Early Alert Canines, and because we use career-change dogs from other service dog organizations, most of our dogs are labs, goldens, or crosses.) What is important is the dogs nose, it's desire to work and please you, and whether the dog has the skills and aptitude required for public access. I wish you luck!

I have a multi-task trained SD and one of his tasks is blood sugar alert. He is a Standard Poodle. There are a number of smaller DADs, but what`s important is the temperament of the dog. I would try and look for a easily trainable breed that`s smaller in size, but a jack Russell or Beagle would not be at the top half of that list. Both are extremely independent and a Beagle`s need to sniff everything would not be good manners for a SD. If you can find a scent imprinted puppy as a DAD prospect you`re ahead of the challenge of training.

Friend of mine had a Beagle as her SD. The dog would do anything for a treat. But if she knew Elena didn't have a treat, she wouldn't do it. Was never able to be off leash.

Jack Russells are hyper hyper dogs but they love to work.

I'm not a fan of small dogs. My SD is a Rottweiler! LOL

Thanks Hillary,

I hope this will work for me maybe- I will have to do some more research on how to train a dog also.

I think an easily trainable dog is a good idea- beagles are definitely harder to train in general...what is scent imprinted? Does that mean they are partly trained already?

our beagle would do tricks for food too...omg- don't think my cats would like a

1. Diabetic service dog

This is Clarice 2 1/2 yr old Chihuahua, a "puppy mill" rescued dog. She is a diabetic service dog. Clarice is detecting high blood sugar in this youtube video.

2. service dog

Quila (chihuahua) is a service dog for Teea who is in a wheel chair.

3. Diabetic service dog

Sugar 5 year old diabetic service dog

Scent imprinted, I think, is a dog who already loves to sniff and can distinguish between smells. Like one who can tell which hand holds the treat.

I winced at the first one but really disliked the third.

One, these dogs are professionals. Seriousness is very important. When someone is out with their SD, they are representing all of us. So, dressing them up in costumes or cutesy crap? PLEASE please don't ever do that while the dog is in public where only a SD would be allowed. That person and the dog are never going to get respect. Smiles and "aw, how cute" yes. Respect, no. Same goes for carrying the dog in a bag or in a lap. Too many pets are carried this way (which is fine for them) and it will get the PWD stopped and harassed nearly every time.

Two, barking to alert is a huge mistake. Licking, pawing, tugging - these are much better. Barking should only be reserved for when they need to alert someone else that you have fallen or are unconscious. Barking is probably the main fear business owners and managers have of the presence of a service dog in their business. They can legally ask you to leave if the dog is disruptive. This was the saving grace of the third article. A non-yappy Chihuahua is a rare thing.

One thing to keep in mind when choosing a dog for a DAD is to consider your lifestyle. It seems like that would be the easy part but it often is overlooked. If you live or work in a hectic, crowded place (a warehouse, a department store), a small dog probably would not be a good idea. On the other hand, in an office situation, a small dog would be ideal. For a DAD, physical ability, other then scent discrimination, isn't as big a consideration. They only need to be big enough to alert you in whatever situation/location you happen to be in.

I knew a guy who was quadriplegic and his SD was a Chihuahua. His needs were so great that he never went anywhere alone but she was a great help to him at home. He was an artist and she was perfect to hand him dropped brushes or to pull the brush out of his hand and help him slip the next one in. It gave him independence where he wanted it the most.

I know a woman in my county who has a Hearing Alert dog, a Papillion. The dog does an excellent job but she and the dog are constantly harassed. Too many people and carrying their little dogs around like they are an accessory, not a pet. She doesn't carry hers, of course, but is still viewed the same. The only time she is not letting the dog walk beside her is in a crowded store. The dog rides on the bottom rack of the cart near her shins where it could reach out and paw her leg when needed.

It is actually funny to watch Jo (my retired Rottie SD) get backed up by our cats. They pick on her a lot but really love her. It is her they go to and rub against or curl up next to. Mike, the Rottie mix trainee, doesn't care much for cats but won't chase them or run from them. He just doesn't seem to understand them. But, really, I don't either!

ok, thanks paula, our beagle was very much scent imprinted..

Thanks for posting these missrobbie,

they are so cute/precious- I was thinking of a chihuahua because they are small- I teach and I don't know if I would be allowed to have her at work or not though. I do know chihuahuas can bark a lot though and I don't know if I or my cats could tolerate that, but I have heard of chihuahua who are quieter.

Thanks PaulaO,

I have thought about all of this- I wonder how you approach your job to see if they will allow a dog- to be honest I don't know if I could tend to a dog and teach all at the same time. I was wondering about the dog barking also- I think licking is the preferable way to alert for bg highs and lows unless you're asleep and yes- barking will get you kicked out of somewhere I'm sure.

that's good they all get along! our cat used to rule our beagle for the most part.

I don't think my current cats will ever accept a large dog though and they are my first babies so their needs have to come first in any future members of the family decisions- I also don't think I can handle anything larger than a border collie and they need to be on a farm to be truly happy, plus they need too much activity.