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Glossary
Assistance Dog: A generic term for guide, hearing, or service dog specifically trained to do more than one task to mitigate the effects of an individual’s disability. The presence of a dog for protection, personal defense, or comfort does not qualify that dog as an assistance dog.
Assistance Dog Instructor: A person affiliated with a program who is recognized by that program as being directly responsible for educating an assistance dog team and/or meeting other educational requirements of the program.
Assistance Dog Trainer: A person affiliated with a program as being directly responsible for the training and conduct of an assistance dog in training.
Assistance Dogs International Public Access Certification Test: The practical test developed by Assistance Dogs International (ADI) is administered by ADI member organizations to evaluate public suitability for a graduate team. . ADI Public certification indicates to the graduate and to the community that the graduate team is prepared to manage the dog safely and appropriately in public settings.
Canine-Assisted Activity (CAA): an activity in which a specially trained dog-handler team is an integral part and which provides opportunities for motivational, educational, recreational, and/or therapeutic benefits to enhance the quality of life of the person(s) involved. CAA is provided in a variety of settings, may be group or individual in nature and may be implemented for persons of any age. CAA may be delivered by professionals, para-professionals, and/or animal handlers all who are specially trained by the program. This is not a goal-directed intervention.
Canine-Assisted Intervention (CAI): goal-directed interventions designed to promote improvement in physical, social, emotional and/or cognitive functioning of the person(s) involved and in which a specially trained dog-handler team is an integral part. CAI is directed and/or delivered by a professional with specialized expertise and within the scope of practice of his/her profession. CAI may be provided in a variety of settings, may be group or individual in nature and may be implemented for persons of any age. There are specific goals for each individual involved and the process is documented and evaluated. Canine-Assisted Education (CAE) and Canine-Assisted Therapy (CAT) are forms of Canine Assisted Intervention.
Canine-Assisted Education (CAE): goal-directed interventions designed to promote improvement in cognitive functioning of the person(s) involved and in which a specially trained dog-handler team is an integral part of the educational process. CAE is directed and/or delivered by an educational professional with specialized expertise and within the scope of practice of his/her profession. CAE may be provided in a variety of settings, may be group or individual in nature and may be implemented for persons of any age. There are specific goals for each individual involved and the process is documented and evaluated. This is a type of Canine-Assisted Intervention
Canine-Assisted Therapy (CAT): goal-directed interventions designed to promote improvement in physical, social, emotional and/or cognitive functioning of the person(s) involved and in which a specially trained dog-handler team is an integral part of the treatment process. CAT is directed and/or delivered by a health/human service professional with specialized expertise and within the scope of practice of his/her profession. CAT may be provided in a variety of settings, may be group or individual in nature and may be implemented for persons of any age. There are specific goals for each individual involved and the process is documented and evaluated. This is a type of Canine-Assisted Intervention.
Client/Participant: Any individual who is an applicant, student, or graduate of an assistance dog program.
Diabetic (hypoglycemia) Alert Dog: A dog that is trained to alert a diabetic individual to a pronounced drop in blood sugar level. This is a type of service dog.
Facility Dog: A specially trained dog that is working with a volunteer or professional who is trained by a program. The work of a facility dog can include visitations or professional therapy in one or more locations. Public access is permitted only when the dog and handler, who is a trained volunteer or professional, is directly working with a client with a disability.
Guide Dog A dog that guides individuals who are blind or visually impaired. The presence of a dog for protection, personal defense, or comfort does not qualify that dog as a guide dog.
Hearing Dog: A dog that alerts individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to specific sounds.
Seizure Alert Dog: A dog that is trained to alert a person that the onset of a seizure is imminent. This is a type of service dog.
Seizure Response Dog: A dog that is trained to provide comfort and/or a sense of safety to person who is experiencing or has just experienced a seizure. This is a type of service dog.
Skilled Companion Dog: A Skilled Companion Dog is a service dog trained to work or perform tasks with an adult or child with a disability under the guidance of an additional person, a facilitator. A facilitator is typically a parent, spouse or caregiver who handles and cares for the assistance dog, encourages and is responsible for the customized needs of the placement.
Privately Trained Assistance Dog: An assistance dog trained by an individual who is not affiliated with an assistance dog training program.
Program: An organization involved in the training of assistance dogs.
Public Access: The right of a person with a disability to be accompanied by his/her assistance dog in all public accommodations. Public access is granted to the person with the disability, not to the assistance dog.
Public Access for Assistance Dog Instructors and Assistance Dog Trainers: The ability of an assistance dog trainer to work with a dog in public places in order to replicate rather than simulate real life situations.
Puppy raiser: A person or family appointed by a program to socialize and prepare a young dog to enter formal training.
Service Dog: A dog that works for individuals with disabilities other than blindness or deafness. They are trained to perform a wide variety of tasks including but not limited to; pulling a wheelchair, bracing, retrieving, alerting to a medical crisis, and providing assistance in a medical crisis.
Task: This is a trained behavior that the dog does on cue (or command) to mitigate its partner’s disability. The cue can be verbal, a hand signal, something in the environment and/or some behavior exhibited by the partner or another person. Examples of a verbal cue could be “take it” and a hand signal could be pointing at an object to indicate to the dog to retrieve it. A cue in the environment might be a strap on a door, a car in the road or an alarm clock ringing. The behavior of a person could be falling to the ground, hand shaking, or emitting odor of low blood sugar.
Team Training: The instructional process to educate and train participants/students to successfully utilize assistance dogs and facility dogs.