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It typically takes 18-24 months to fully train a service dog of any kind. A service dog requires training in three areas: obedience, tasks training or work, and public access training (distraction proofing and generalization), on top of the socialization he should have received.

Core obedience skills include: sit, down, stay, waiting at doors, heeling, coming when called, and lying down even when he is a distance away from his handler (called an "emergency drop").

The National Service Dog Center compiled and released a manual listing core skills necessary for task training which is available for free download at: http://www.petpartners.org/document.doc?id=170

Minimum standards for public access training (proofing and generalization of skills learned in the first two phases) are available from IAADP.

You may also review the minimum standards Assistance Dogs International requires of all of it's member programs for reference. This is the least amount of training acceptable for passing, but is not the full extent of the training each dog is actually supposed to receive.

Training standards for guide dogs
Training standards for hearing dogs
Training standards for service dogs other than guide and hearing dogs
Standards for working in public

SD training journal.pdf68.12 KB