A Dalmatian serving as a service dog is quite trending now, and this interestingly triggers my curious mind. Like most other people, I have also started to learn about their capabilities to work as a service dog. The more I search, the more amazed I get.
So, can Dalmatians be good service dogs? Dalmatians are good service dogs working with different medical disabilities. They do great as Psychiatric Assistants, Autism assistance dog and PTSD Support Dogs. They can also help as Mobility Assistance Dogs, Wheel-Chair Assistance dogs, and Seizure alert and response dogs as well. But, they are not recommended to perform as Visual Assistant Dogs or Hearing Assistant Dogs.
I have mentioned every detail below, and I bet you will get a clear picture if you keep reading further.
What Makes Dalmatians An Ideal Candidate For Some Service Dog Categories?
All recent research shows Dals do excellent in some categories and they might be good at some others though there is no clear evidence. I’ll explain those later.
Before that, let me tell you a few more things that make a good candidate breed for being an awesome service dog.
The Dal is a large breed of dog that is 19-24 inches tall at the shoulder. Weight is proportional to height and usually varies between 48 and 55 pounds.
Dalmatians are friendly dogs, and they work well with kids. Service dog trainers can easily teach them how to respond to specific disabilities.
I believe the average lifespan of a Dal is very important for any service dog and studies say it lives 13 to 16 years on average.
The Dalmatian is a low-maintenance breed of dog. It is especially useful for service dog handlers, who are usually physically or mentally challenged.
Trained Dalmatian dogs are intelligent enough to detect the majority of the symptoms. When required, they may readily inform the handler or anybody else around.
Spotted dogs are a strong breed of dogs. Even a retired Dal can pull a wheelchair when required.
Roles That Dalmatians Service Dogs May Perform Best
Researchers have come up with a conclusion that Dalmatians work best as Service dogs but in some specific manner. Nowadays people are showing greater interest in having them in their needs.
Now I will discuss some of the categories where Dal is giving remarkable services. So, keep reading.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Mobility Assistance Dog?
Mobility Assistance Dogs are specially trained canines that help people with balance difficulties due to being handicapped.
Large dogs, such as the Dalmatians, are highly recommended for these jobs since they give proper support to their handlers.
While looking for service dogs, I noticed the story of a Dalmatian named Levi, who is a very smart mobility assistance dog. He was trained to retrieve dropped objects, open, and close doors, and bring objects to people.
When his handler is not feeling well about losing balance, Levi is right there to support his handler.
Above I have added a video of Levi where you will see him helping his handler with the laundry.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Medical Alert Dog?
Training a Medical Alert dog is not so easy, but you will be glad to know that Dalmatians’ natural instincts about physical changes are significant. They can alert the handler about serious physical changes such as blood pressure, hormone levels, etc.
While studying an article, I got to know about a black spotted dog named Noel who lives in Ukraine. He works as a medical alert dog for his handler Andrea.
It can quickly detect any kind of incoming panic alert. Moreover, he is well trained to alert his handler before it gets too late.
I have mentioned a post regarding Noel’s activity as a service dog above for your better understanding.
I have heard a story of a Dal named Luna who serves her handler as a medical alert dog for a long period of time. Her smiling face boosts up her handlers mood and she is always conscious about her job.
Before her handler experiences any physical change, Luna tries to alert her by shaking her hand or tapping on her thigh.
I have added a link above where you will find more information about Luna and her activities.
I know a medical alert dog named Belle who helps his handler both indoor and outdoor to warn for any physical changes. He has been trained to focus on his work by his handler and he is great at his job.
I have heard about a dog named Bella who is working as a medical alert dog. She has been active and can quickly warn her handler if she can sense any physical changes.
Above I have attached a video of Bella where you will get to see how she warns her handler of an uncertain attack.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Seizure Alert Dog?
When you are looking for a Seizure Alert Dog then the first thing you need to know that these canines are trained to naturally detect an seizure. Dalmatians are quite capable of serving in this category.
There is a story of a deaf Dalmatian named Charlie who worked tremendously well as a seizure alert dog. Colleen Wilson, his handler, suffers from mild Vagus and falls unconscious when her blood pressure falls too low.
When Charlie observes such occurrences, he rushes up to her and sits on her to keep her quiet so she doesn’t pass out.
Lucky is the name of a spotted dog who works as a multi-talented and he serves as a seizure alert dog for a long time. Whenever his owner has any changes in blood pressure or hormone, Lucky is the first one to detect it at the right time.
I have added a video above where you will see how Lucky tries to warn his handler and comfort her before the smartwatch could detect the rapid change.
There is even a post mentioned above where Lucky was trying to alert his handler by licking on her face to take precautions.
There is another seizure-alert dog named Bella, who is a quick learner for sure. While she was getting trained in a super shop, she suddenly started to warn her handler.
She could sense some physical changes in her handler. Later the handler could realize her motive and when she started to shake Bella tried to comfort her.
I have attached the video of this incident above and I believe every time she does her job properly.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Seizure Response Dog?
Trained canines who can respond immediately after the handler gets any kind of seizure is known as Seizure Alert dog. Even Dalmatians are specially trained to act responsibly in such situations.
I have heard a story about Lucky who has been specially trained to work as a seizure response dog. When his handler experiences a blackout, Lucky immediately starts licking face so that his handler can regain sense.
Moreover, he knows how to call others for help. I have attached a video of Lucky above where he is responding to a seizure in his own way.
Belle is another seizure response dog who has been specially trained by his handler. Belle can activate an emergency response alarm or fetch a family member to help. He is still under training so he has better scope to improve his working skills.
I have added the Instagram profile link of Belle where you will find further information.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Autism Assistance Dog?
People suffering from autism need a special service dog who can help them to lead an independent life. And without any doubt Dalmatian is the best choice to work as an autism assistance dog.
Sarah Oddo Darrow has a black spotted dog who has been assigned to assist her son dealing with autism. It was surprising to know that the boy is quite comfortable with his Dal.
He likes spending time with his canine and this helps the boy to act independently.
You can find the story of this Dalmatian from the link mentioned above.
Autism assistance dogs not only help kids but also elder people and Luna is such a canine. She has been trained to take special care of her handler who is suffering from autism.
This little pup keeps track of her handler so that she doesn’t feel alone and uncomfortable outdoors.
Above I have added a link where you will get details of Luna’s activity.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Psychiatric Service Dog?
Psychiatric Service Dogs are service dogs that assist individuals who have depression, anxiety, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) for them to live a better life. Dalmatian is a better contender for this position.
Dalmatians are great at blocking any disturbing object that triggers anxiety in the handler and Belle is no different. He knows how to calm down his handler in any adverse situation.
Whenever his handler gets depressed Belle tries to deviate his mind and engages him in different activities.
Above I have mentioned an instagram profile where you will get more relevant posts about Belle.
Miles is another psychiatric assistance dog who is well-trained as well as he tries to respond quickly. Even his handler is quite amazed with his service and always feels safe around Miles.
If you want to know a bit more about this cute spotted dog then you can follow the profile link mentioned above.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Service Dog?
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety condition that can occur after a stressful incident. A service dog like Dalmatian can assist its handler in remaining calm and dealing with challenging emotional states.
A black spotted dog may also stop harmful behavior and remind their owners to take their medicine.
Lucky is a multipurpose service dog, yet he knows how to respond to different situations with perfection. His handler is suffering from PTSD, and she tends to react to some facts related to her past life.
This results in experiencing negative symptoms like an anxiety attack or a flashback. Our Dal Lucky immediately sits on her lap and tries to calm her down. He is a perfect lifesaver for his handler.
I bet you will love to know more about Lucky for which I have attached an Instagram link above.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Wheel-chair Assistance Dog?
A wheelchair assistance dog is trained to help wheelchair-dependent people. These service pooches are strong to pull the wheelchair of the handler to move them from one place to another. A dalmatian is strong enough to pull a wheel-chair dependent person.
They can also open and close doors, collect phones, pick up fallen things, and do anything else the handler requires.
I have seen an interview of a service dog named Digby who is well-trained to assist his handler Katie who is dependent on an automatic wheelchair.
Though Digby does not need to pull a wheelchair with force, he is a perfect companion for sure. He can retrieve any object, open and close doors, and empty the washing machine for Katie.
Most importantly, he helps Katie to live a normal life like others. I have shared a video above about Digby’s activities.
Can Dalmatian Be A Good Social Anxiety Dog?
Social anxiety is a serious issue that needs proper care. The service dog who comforts handlers before any panic attack is known as a social anxiety dog.
They are taught to give false alerts just to divert his handler’s mind. Dalmatians are well adapted to such activities naturally so they are to work as social anxiety dogs.
A multipurpose dog named Noel has been professionally trained to assist his handler before she faces any kind of panic attack in the presence of a huge gathering.
He mostly interrupts anxiety attack and anxious behaviors by pulling the handler away from the specific area. Sometimes he can sense a panic attack earlier and try to deviate his handler’s mind.
Above I have given the facebook post link where you will find further details about Noel.
In the above video, you will see a social anxiety dog Bella. Here she was trying to console her handler when she got upset and anxious in the presence of other people in the shopping mall.
Though the anxiety attack was staged, you can see how quickly Bella responds to it and tries heart and soul to help her handler. She immediately started licking her hands so that her handler could feel a bit better.
Roles Dalmatian Service Dogs May Fail To Perform
Dalmatians are undoubtedly good as service dogs but even they have some lackings. Below I will discuss the categories which are not a perfect match for a Dal.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Hearing Dog?
Dalmatians are proactive yet they are not suitable to become hearing assistance dogs. A hearing dog needs to be very accurate about the sense of different noises to alert his handler who is deaf.
Unfortunately, 20-22% of Dalmatians are deaf and this is a genetic issue. Before you take a Dal as a service dog, you should check his hearing capabilities.
A hearing dog needs to alert his handler of various sounds like doorbells, alarm clock and smoke alerts. As a Dal is weak at hearing, he may miss such important noises which can be dangerous for his handler.
For hearing canine, you need a responsible breed and a black spotted dog is not one of them.
Can Dalmatians Be A Good Visual Assistance Dog?
When we think of a visual assistance dog what we imagine is a dog who helps a blind handler to navigate blocks or move from one place to another.
Now, if you think a Dal is a perfect guide dog then you are partially wrong. Because if you train your Dal to follow a specific person then it will but that is possible only in small places.
But in a public area a Dalmatian may get confused and follow some other route which can be dangerous for its blind handler.
Sometimes if the handler is alone with a Dal then it will have none to follow for which it may travel some random places which is not good for its handler. So considering a Dalmatian as a visual assistance dog is not a safe option.
Roles May Fit Dalmatian Service Dogs (No Examples Found Yet)
Now we have known so many activities Dalmatians can perform yet some research might be going on to find out how well they can possibly work in some other categories mentioned below.
Can Dalmatian Be A Good Diabetic Alert Dog?
A diabetic alert dog can detect low levels of blood sugars and alert his handler beforehand. This helps the handler to take precautions in proper time.
Now there is no exact evidence to say that a Dal can serve as a diabetic alert dog but it has a strong sense of smell.
They can perform as a medical alert dog so there is a chance that if they are trained properly then they might be able to work as a Diabetic Alert Dog.
Can Dalmatian Be A Good Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Service Dog?
Service dogs for children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) assist children who were exposed to alcohol during pregnancy and have FASD issues.
As per other studies, Dalmatians are good as Autism service dogs and those are trained with special techniques. These training programs are quite similar to that used for FASD Service dogs.
So there are higher chances of making a Dal expert in the field of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. There is no evidence yet but trainers can focus on this sector too.
Can Dalmatian Be A Good Allergy Detection Dog?
There is no evidence but a Dalmatian might be trained as an allergy detection dog. Dals have a great sense of smell. So there is a possibility that they might recognize the smells of life-threatening allergens for their handlers.
Though Dalmatians are not capable of working in every sector, I can proudly say they work best in their own working zone. They are getting popular, and people want to have them in their life as Dals deals great with emotions.
Some other retired black-spotted dogs can be trained for the better of some other people, and people will try to work on that in the future.