Dogs for vets: Top service dogs for veterans 

Services dogs can provide several different benefits. 

Dogs for vets can provide a sense of familiarity when going to a location, just their presents can offer a sense of calm and offer a frame of reference when assessing an area and community. They can retrieve medication, assist in times of need, carry items, and much much more. 

Popular Service Dog Breeds

Here is a list of the most popular breeds of service dogs. There are many others this is just a list of the top dogs for vets. 

Labrador Retriever, Golden Retriever, German Shepherd, Poodle, Boxer, Great Dane, Border Collie, Pomeranian, Bernese Mountain Dogs, and Pit Bulls.

Where to get a service dog?

Service dogs can be found in your local area, usually a simple google search of “service dogs for veterans near me” will do. 

Here is a list of service dog providers. 

Pets for Vets

Little Angels Service Dogs

K9s for Warriors

Freedom Service Dogs


Commands a service dog can do:

Look at me – the dog will look at your face. We use this to have the dog focus on the person, to get the dog’s attention. 


Sit –the dog should go into a seated position with its butt on the floor.


Stay– The dog should stay in place, and not move out of that position. It is recommended to have the dog lay down or sit when using the stay command. You must return to the dog before releasing him from the stay command.


Wait – Use this command when you want the dog to wait momentarily, such as going out the door, or when you open a car door.


Come – The dog should come to you. They can come and stand or sit in front of you.


Let’s go – We use this command to have the dog start walking by your side.


Go-visit – We use this command when we want the dog to approach another person to let them pet him. her.


Go-under – We use this to have the dog go under a chair, table, etc. (useful in restaurants, flights).


Leave-it – Use this command to have the dog leave an item alone, you may use this if the dog “looks at something” such as a dog, squirrel, or food and you want them to leave it alone.


Paws-up – You want the dog to put his front paws on something.


Off – Get off something, off the furniture, people, etc. 


Get dressed – To put their vest or harness on to go to work.


Nose-it – The dog should touch their nose on whatever object you point to. We use this to turn on lights, shut doors, etc.


Tug – The dog will pull on an item. We use this to open doors, drawers, etc.


Step – Use this command to get the dog to walk with you up and downstairs one step at a time. This can also be used when you want the dog to take one step.


Stand– When you want the dog to remain in a standing position; often used during veterinary visits for examinations, grooming, etc.


Hop-up – We use this to get the dog to get up from a down position.


Spot – We identify a marker such as a rug or a dog bed at his/her spot.” We ask the dog to go to their spot and lay down. They should wait there until you give them the release command.


Return – This means to return to the person’s left side and stay there.


Switch– We use this to have the dog move from your side to your opposite side. We would use this to get the dog to go through a door on the opening side. We never have our dogs go through a door on the hinged side of the door, to avoid getting a foot or tail caught as the door closes.


Ring-the-bell – The dog will ring a bell to notify others in the home that they need to come to assist (seizure response).

List to link:

Resources and links used in the article: