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Assistance dog fetches a toy for a young boy sitting in a wheelchair

Good to know

How are assistance dogs funded?

Assistance dog owners receive their assistance dogs free of charge. The payments for food and veterinary care are also covered. The costs are largely borne by the Foundation; there are only a few cases which are partially funded by the Swiss disability insurance system.

The Foundation is funded by donations and legacies from private individuals and by the sale of promotional items.

May wheelchair users make specific requests regarding the assistance being provided?

Of course they can. Once an assistance dog has been assigned to a particular person, the assistance dog instructor will train that dog to provide specific assistance to suit the owner's needs, even while the dog is still at the school. For example, it might fill and empty the washing machine, take off shoes, or recognise, seek, find and fetch specific objects by their name.

Can a child also apply for an assistance dog?

Yes, as long as the child is at least ten years old, and is able to communicate verbally with the dog.

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