Autism service dogs are matched with individuals with autism to assist with a variety of behaviors including safety, social, communication, adaptive skills and sensory integration.
Veteran service dogs are custom trained to help wounded veterans gain independence and reintegrate into their families and society.
Facility dogs are carefully paired with professionals that serve populations who benefit from animal assisted intervention or therapy.
To start the application process, please review the process and criteria below.
The demand for a service dog far outweighs our available service dogs in training and we do not guarantee that every applicant will receive a dog. We screen and interview applicants whose needs match the strengths and skills of our dogs. At each step, TLCAD evaluates information provided to determine if an applicant will proceed to the next step of the application process. Notice is given approximately 4-8 weeks prior to training.
Pre-Qualification Questionnaire to determine candidacy and readiness to apply for a service dog.
Application to include household information, employment and background information, medical and personal references, a video and a personal narrative. Applicants complete application must be received to continue the application process. On average, inquiry response will occur within 2 weeks of receipt of submission.
Personal Interview to discuss interest and evaluate compatibility with our program and our dogs. This interview may be in person or a virtual meeting. On average, interviews occur within 4 weeks of receipt of completed Application Packet.
Invitation to Student Pool will be offered once the application is assessed and all criteria has been met to join our student pool. Our student pool wait time is currently up to 2 years. You will be notified quarterly of your status in the pool. On average, notification of application status will occur within 8 weeks of Personal Interview.
Meet & Greets will be scheduled when a service dog becomes available for placement and there is a match between the dog’s skills and the student’s needs. Matching of skills, needs and personalities of the dog and the student is very important for the long-term success of the placement.
Invitation to Team Training will be offered when a student has been paired with a dog ready for placement. Team Trainings occur up to 4 times per year as groups of service dogs become available.
Prior to beginning the application process, please be sure to determine if a TLCAD service dog is right for you.
TLCAD only places service dogs with veterans, individuals with autism and as facility dogs.
TLCAD only places service dogs with recipients in San Diego County or within a 120-mile radius of Ione, CA, based on current resources for post-placement support. Note: For Facility Dog applicants, see Team Training for details on the placement radius.
Students must attend Team Training. Please visit our Team Training page to ensure you are able to attend the training if matched with a service dog.
Applicants should be prepared to share detailed information that pertains to their ability to meet requirements to receive a service dog. Including but not limited to the following:
Provide contact information for key medical professionals that can be contacted during the application process.
Provide a completed medical form confirming medical diagnoses.
Ability to designate two people for support and emergency care of dog.
Ability to care for the dog’s physical and psychological needs.
Ability to provide for the financial needs of the dog.
Desire to utilize a service dog for public access and interaction.
Commitment to learning and utilizing positive reinforcement training to maintain dog’s behavior.
Start Application Process Here
Our demand for service dogs far outweighs our supply, we encourage applicants to pursue applying for service dogs from multiple organizations to increase their likelihood of obtaining a service dog. For more information, please visit our resources page HERE and the service dog information page HERE.