What Is The Difference Between A Psychiatric Service Dog And An Emotional Support Animal?

Dogs have performed all manner of tasks to assist humans in various situations. Dogs are incredibly useful for the treatment and therapies of various disorders, both mental and physical. The most well-known fact and use of specially trained dogs to assist blind owners. But, dogs can be prescribed and recommended to help treat psychological disorders. There often needs to be more clarity between the categories between psychiatric service dogs and emotional support animals.     

If both categories aim to alleviate signs associated with psychological issues, how are they different then?

Psychiatric Service Dog Vs. Emotional Support Animal Infographic.

Both types of animal help to improve the mental health of their owners. As both service dogs and emotional support animal provides support and assistance with psychological issues, it is easy to understand the difference between them. However, an individual can get a get esa certificate for dogs.

What Is A Psychiatric Service Dog?

Dogs are commonly used to help physically disabled people with everyday tasks and make their lives much more straightforward than if they don’t have someone to help. These are specially treated to perform specific tasks and behave much better than typical pet dogs. All the services and drugs are protected under the particular american act, which allows them to move around pet-restricted areas such as housing providers with no pet zone rules. So, an individual needs an ESA letter for housing online.

This doesn’t apply only to physical dysfunction but to psychiatric disabilities as well. Psychiatric service dogs are used by individuals whose mental impairment is so crucial that it affects their daily tasks.

For instance, for mentally disabled persons with a tendency to wander off when everything is disoriented, only a psychiatric service dog would be trained and assigned to help and prevent them from busy roads.

What Is An Emotional Support Animal?

While serving a similar service, ESA assists its owners as a part of the treatment plan. They don’t help you with everyday tasks to improve the signs of certain psychological disorders. The only physical assistance of ESA might provide physical assistance to the individual on command or respond to playful activities.

Emotional support animals(ESA) do not have the same level of access as service dogs. They are only allowed in planes for travel and in homes that don’t allow pets. But, individuals can get esa certificate for travel in some planes.

How To Get An ESA Letter Online?

With the law, only service dogs extend public restrictions for animals. For instance, in the usual circumstances, people can get their pets on board when flying on commercial airlines, but you are not. They must transport them separately, and they may travel with certified service animals.

As emotional service animals are assigned to people undergoing restorative treatment to provide emotional stability and are not certified, the viable source does not recognize them as a physical necessity.

Thus, emotional support animals and their owners do not have the same rights as psychiatric service dogs. However, more exemptions exist for that individual to have an Emotional Support Dog Letter. In contrast, psychiatric service animals may help their owner in accommodations such as hotels or housing. However, there is some expedition regarding private housing and accommodation.

While psychiatric service animals and emotional support animals are prescribed to individuals to help with mental impairments, they are designated to serve other purposes. Individuals diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder that is severe enough to impair their functioning for a psychiatric service animal to help in daily activities. 


A service animal is trained to person some specific tasks with a disability. On the other hand, an emotional support animal doesn’t need any training; all that’s required is a get emotional support animal certificate from a mental health professional that explains its medicinal value. However, Service animals must undergo individualized training.

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