Yorkies are small in size, but they have big personalities.
They are feisty, energetic, loving, and domineering. They are among the most affectionate dog breeds.
But they always want to be the center of attention, too
That last point can get annoying at times, but as a therapy dog, it is actually a positive quality.
In fact, all of a Yorkie’s defining characteristics are advantages when performing its duties as an emotional support dog.
So it would seem that they are perfect for the task.
But do they also have some characteristics that are not ideal in emotional support dogs?
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about Yorkies as therapy dogs, along with a general overview of the emotional support dog requirements and qualifications.
- 1 Are Yorkies Good Emotional Support Dogs?
- 1.1 Definition Of Emotional Support Dog
- 1.2 How To Qualify For An Emotional Support Dog
- 1.3 Training Requirements For Emotional Support Dogs
- 1.4 Registration Requirements For Emotional Support Dogs
- 1.5 Yorkie Emotional Support Dog Certificates
- 1.6 Characteristics That Make Yorkies Great Therapy Dogs
- 1.7 Rights And Regulations For Emotional Support Dogs
- 1.8 Breed And Weight Restrictions For Emotional Support Dogs
- 1.9 Your Yorkie Therapy Dog
- 2 Yorkie Emotional Support Dog: Conclusion
Are Yorkies Good Emotional Support Dogs?
Yes, Yorkies can be great emotional support dogs. Their size, silky coat, and personality make them perfect for the task.
Yorkies also keep things simple when it comes to transportation. Due to their small size and low weight, you won’t have the stress you would with a larger dog, when taking it certain places.
We will go into more detain on what makes Yorkies such good therapy dogs further below. First, we want to examine what exactly makes an ESD, how you can quality for one, and what type of certification is required.
Definition Of Emotional Support Dog
Emotional Support Dogs (ESD) are dogs that give emotional support to their owners. They are trained to help their owner deal with mental or emotional struggles on a daily basis.
ESD are legally prescribed by a mental health professional, such as a therapist or a psychologist.
Emotional support dogs are different from service dogs. Service dogs are extensively trained to aid their owners with their disabilities. They grant access to their owners anywhere they go.
Can a Yorkie be a service dog? Sure, but it depends on the tasks you need it to perform.
Emotional support dogs do not undergo extensive training. However, owners must train their ESD and ensure that they do not misbehave in public, no matter what is going on. They need to be able to keep their cool.
ESDs are not allowed special access to establishments that do not usually allow pets, like restaurants or malls. Exceptions exist only for service dogs, not ESD. However, under the Fair Housing Act, they do have the right to live in housing, even if pets are not usually allowed.
ESDs can also stay with their owner in the plane cabin during flights.
Emotional support dogs are capable of making their owners feel better and feel happier. Their service is valuable to those who need it, but pets and ESDs are different.
A pet can also make you happy, no doubt about that. However, ESDs are dogs prescribed by a mental health professional specifically for the purpose. These dogs are given certificates and a license to be an ESD.
Misrepresenting your pet as an ESD when it does not have the proper license and certification is unethical, and even illegal in some jurisdictions.
How To Qualify For An Emotional Support Dog
Emotional support dogs help people suffering from PTSD, depression, anxiety, among others. They offer support, love, and comfort to those who need it.
You can have an emotional support dog when you suffer from one or more mental illnesses. Here is a list of some emotional and mental illness that can qualify you for one.
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- General Anxiety Disorder
- Bipolar Disorder
- Gender Identity Crisis
- Cognitive Disorders
- Learning Disorders
- Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
- Severe Anxiety
Training Requirements For Emotional Support Dogs
Unlike a service dog, an emotional support dog does not undergo a specialized and extensive training program. But you do want a dog that possesses certain traits.
Yorkies’ natural personality gives them a big advantage, but any Yorkie that wants to become an emotional support dog should also possess the following traits.
- Your dog should be well behaved and follow your command, no matter what is happening around it.
- Your Yorkie should never cause any type of harm or disturbance.
- Your Yorkie should never be aggressive toward other dogs or people.
- Your Yorkie should be spayed or neutered (not a legal requirement).
Aggressive dogs can still be good emotional support dogs, if they are neutered or spayed. Neutered or spayed aggressive dogs show an amazing decrease in aggression toward people and other dogs.
Just make sure you know when to neuter a Yorkie male. Doing so at the wrong age puts him at risk of future health issues.
Registration Requirements For Emotional Support Dogs
According to the American’s with Disability Act (ADA), an emotional support dog does not require any registration.
But some owners prefer to register their emotional support dog, since this can come in handy when dealing with some situations.
Registered emotional support dogs are easier to identify for airlines and landlords. It means that without further discussion, your dog can get on board with you and can live in your apartment.
Airlines and landlords are not allowed to ignore and discriminate against any dogs that are registered as ESD and service dogs.
They should be able to understand the importance of an ESD to their owner’s well-being.
You don’t have to disclose your emotional issues to building owners, employees, and employers. However, some of them might ask for your ESD’s information. This is when a formal registration or certificate comes in handy.
Yorkie Emotional Support Dog Certificates
An ESD letter is usually referred to as an Emotional Support Dog Certificate.
You can get your Yorkie’s certificate from the mental health professional that suggested you get an emotional support dog. The Emotional Support Dog Letter must follow these guidelines.
- The ESD letter must be on the official letterhead of your therapist.
- The ESD letter is usually valid for no more than a year and thus should not be dated more than a year prior to submission.
- The ESD letter should indicate the therapist’s name, license number, date, and contact details.
Failure in submitting an ESD letter, or submitting one that does not meet the guidelines above, can result in it being rejected.
Landlords and airlines both have the right to reject the certification of your ESD, if you do not provide the correct ESD letter.
Characteristics That Make Yorkies Great Therapy Dogs
Yorkies are among the smallest dog breeds, but they tend to demand far more attention than most other breeds.
Yorkies are popular as a pampered lap dog, because of their size and their beautiful, silky hair. But they are also popular as an emotional support dog, in part for the same reasons: size and cuteness.
There are actually numerous reasons they are commonly used not only as emotional support dogs, but also as therapy dogs.
Their coat is very soft, making them wonderful to hug and pet. Their coats are also great for people having sensory difficulties, because they can be calmed by smooth textures.
When it comes to training, Yorkies stand out there, too (though you have to know the right way to train a Yorkie to overcome their stubbornness and short attention span). They have a high natural intelligence, which allows them to pick up cues related to your feelings easily.
But they do not get overwhelmed with sudden changes that they pick up from your emotions. Also, they have big personalities that will cheer you up when you are feeling down.
Despite their size being small, Yorkies are surprisingly brave. They will not panic when you’re panicking.
Since they are small, they are lightweight, making them easy to carry everywhere. In other words, they can come a long and provide emotional support just about anywhere.
Rights And Regulations For Emotional Support Dogs
According to the law, ESDs are not allowed to enter markets, restaurants, or any place where food is served. The standard health regulations restrict food establishments from allowing any animals to enter the premises.
Employees and management would not be permitted to let ESD into their establishment, even if they wanted to.
Service dogs are the only dogs with special rights and regulations for public access.
However, according to federal law, you can bring your emotional support dog onto a plane at no extra cost.
And your ESD Yorkie can also live under the same roof as you, even if you live in a building with that specifically prohibits pets.
As much as possible, the law wants your ESD to be with you at all times, so that it is always there to help you with your condition.
However, some restrictions do exist for the safety and concern of others. The only major restriction one is the restricted access to places where food is served.
Breed And Weight Restrictions For Emotional Support Dogs
There are no breed and weight restrictions when it comes to a dog qualifying as an emotional support dog. This ensures that there is no breed discrimination.
For example, some people are scared of pit bulls, but they must still grant an ESD pit bull access. You can also onw multiple emotional support dogs. Up to three are permitted, as long as your therapist prescribes them.
Your Yorkie Therapy Dog
If you feel like your Yorkie is making you feel better during the course of your day, it is already your emotional support dog, for all intents an purposes
If you think that your pup has the right attitude for the task, you can get in touch with your therapist. Take note that it is important to have the Emotional Support Dog letter from a medical health professional.
It will give your Yorkie the full ESD rights, which will make things easier for you when trying to take it with you to certain places.
As an emotional support dog, your Yorkie should help make your days go peacefully. It should give you instant comfort when you need it, and even when you don’t.
One great thing about a Yorkie is how loving they can get. Some will even say they can be too clingy. They definitely want all of your attention. But as an ESD, this is usually a good trait.
There’s no shame in needing a “helping paw” to ease your mental and emotional anguish. Many people simply derive far more comfort from animals than from other humans.
A dog is an animal we can talk to and cry to without being judged or misinterpreted. Emotional support dogs provide a new lease on life to many people struggling with mental and emotional health.
In short, your emotional support dog absorbs your negative vibes and replaces them with love and comfort.
Yorkie Emotional Support Dog: Conclusion
Yorkies are wonderful at providing emotional support. If you feel that your Yorkie is making you feel better and you want to get it officially registered, go ahead and talk to your therapist.
And if you suffer from emotional problems or other mental issues, but you do not yet have a dog, talk to your therapist about that too. They may recommend an emotional support dog.
In that case, consider the Yorkie. When it comes to emotional support few, if any, breeds do it better!