Service dogs can perform a variety of different tasks for their handlers. They can be trained specifically for a certain situation or purpose such as Medical Assistance Dogs and Virtual Assistance Dogs etcetera. It is also possible for service dogs to be trained for more than one purpose so that they can perform a diverse range of duties.

While this is common knowledge, it may be difficult for some people to pinpoint exactly the tasks that service dogs can be entrusted with. In this post, we are looking at 100 examples of service dog tasks that your Golden Doodle can perform.

General Tasks

These general tasks can be performed by any service dog i.e. a service dog which is not specifically trained for a certain purpose. Service dogs in general can be trained for any sort of work that their handler is incapable of doing due to their disability.

Some of these tasks, which you can train your dog to do, include:

  1. Fetching specific items by name
  2. Opening doors for handler
  3. Closing doors
  4. Carrying small items for handler
  5. Dragging heavy items across floor or surface
  6. Getting the garbage into the can/receptacle
  7. Retrieving newspaper and mail
  8. Alerting the handler to noises and sounds
  9. Warning about trespassers and intruders
  10. Helping handler to remove clothing articles by tugging and pulling
  11. Reminding handler to take medication or do exercise etcetera
  12. Giving money to the delivery man
  13. Fetch grocery/food items from the delivery man
  14. Carry around items for handler in basket or bag (while shopping)
  15. Pay for purchased goods at the store
  16. Give the receipt to the handler
  17. Carry goods to the car
  18. Carry goods from car to front door
  19. Open the car door for the handler
  20. Hold open the car door to allow the handler to get in/out
  21. Close car door

Medical Service Dog Tasks

Medical Service Dog Tasks

Medical Service Dogs are trained to respond to the medical conditions and emergencies of their handlers. There are different types of tasks that these service dogs can be trained to do. Some medical service dogs may be trained to respond to possible seizures while some may be trained to alert their handlers to specific stimuli. In case the handler becomes unconscious or unresponsive, these dogs can alert the relevant personnel so that action can be taken. The tasks listed here can be performed in any sort of situation such as when the handler is outside the house, at the hospital, on the front lawn etcetera.

A list of some of these tasks is as follows:

  1. Helping the handler during a seizure by nuzzling, snuggling etcetera
  2. Distracting handler from repeated motions and flashing colors (to avoid seizures)
  3. Help disabled handlers by pulling the wheelchair
  4. Alert caretaker to seizures
  5. Alert caretaker to stroke
  6. Alert caretaker to migraines
  7. Alert caretaker to unconsciousness
  8. Fetch mobile phone to the handler
  9. Accompany handler to medical store/pharmacy
  10. Pay for purchases at the cashier counter
  11. Carry medicines and medical apparatus to car
  12. Assist handler in getting in the car
  13. Assist handler in leaving the car
  14. Carry purchased medication to front-door
  15. Carry medicines to the caretaker
  16. Convey written message to the caretaker
  17. Lead caretaker to the handler
  18. Carry necessary items for handler in a backpack
  19. Dragging/pulling wheelchair and walker to the handler
  20. Retrieve diabetic shoes for handler
  21. Alert handler to allergens

Guide Service Dog Tasks (For Visually Impaired Handlers)

Guide dogs are extremely useful and helpful. For blind handlers or people who have lost their eyesight partially, it can be difficult to get from one place to the other. The danger of walking on the road and the sidewalks without any guide is extreme. There can be open manhole covers, obstructions, and other sorts of hazardous elements that can be the cause of accidents and injuries. A guide dog, however, can help its handler by performing the following tasks:

Guide Service Dog Tasks (For Visually Impaired Handlers)

  1. Help handler leave the house and get on the sidewalk
  2. Help handler find keys, shoes, walking stick etcetera
  3. Open front gate/door for handler
  4. Lead the handler to the caretaker
  5. Take handler to well-known and frequently visited stores
  6. Help handler locate goods and items
  7. Help handler find the cashier counter
  8. Lead the handler to a nearby relative’s house
  9. Lead handler to entrances and exits
  10. Alert others to handler’s condition
  11. Take a specific and familiar route to guide the handler
  12. Lead handler around obstructions
  13. Alert handler to steps and stairs
  14. Help handler locate the elevator
  15. Press elevator button
  16. Alert handler when the elevator reaches the desired floor
  17. Alert handler when a street or road ends
  18. Alert handler to poles and signposts
  19. Avoid other pedestrians, cyclists, and vehicles
  20. Push open door for handler
  21. Ring the doorbell
  22. Help handler get into bus/train
  23. Help handler find empty seat or space
  24. Help hander get off bus or train

Brace and Support Service Dog Tasks

Brace and movement support service dogs are trained to help people who have difficulty in moving, balancing, or getting back up from a sitting/lying position. Some tasks that these service dogs can perform are:

  1. Help a sitting handler to stand
  2. Help a standing handler to sit down on a seat or chair
  3. Help handler get in wheelchairs
  4. Help handler get up slopes
  5. Help handler get up steps and stairs
  6. Bracing when the handler is walking
  7. Bracing when the handler needs to get up after falling down/losing balance
  8. Help stabilize a leaning/falling handler
  9. Assist handler to get in sitting position by burrowing below the back and standing up
  10. Push handler into sitting position when the former is having difficulty breathing
  11. Push handler over for easier breathing
  12. Alert caretaker or stranger in case of emergency

Hearing Service Dog Tasks

Hearing Service Dog Tasks

These service dogs are trained to help handlers who are partially or completely incapable of hearing and discerning sounds. By alerting the handler via touch or visual depiction, these dogs can make their handler aware of certain activities and events etcetera. Here are some tasks that these dogs can perform:

  1. Alert handler when someone addresses them
  2. Alert handler to approaching cars and vehicles
  3. Alert handler to unusual sounds
  4. Alert handler to items that are mistakenly dropped
  5. Alert handler when phone rings
  6. Alert handler to other people and individuals
  7. Alert handler to sirens and alarms
  8. Alert handler to the arrival of bus/train on the terminal
  9. Fetch hearing aid from caretaker

Tasks performed by Psychiatric Service Dogs

Psychiatric service dogs are trained to assist and help handlers who suffer from mental illnesses and psychiatric conditions. These dogs can be trained to do the following tasks:

  1. Remind handler about treatment/medication
  2. In case of a panic attack in the public, the dog can lay across the handler or snuggle to help them calm down
  3. Stop handler from raging or displaying anger
  4. Prevent handler from inflicting self-harm
  5. Help calm down nervous handler by curling up close
  6. Help handler stick to a fixed routine by reminding about store trips and walks etcetera
  7. Help handler discern between hallucinations by giving a reality check
  8. Retrieve medication from family member or caretaker

Miscellaneous Service Dog Tasks

Here are some other general tasks that can be performed by service dogs.

  1. Help prevent dissociation episodes
  2. Alert family members about any attack or episode
  3. Help handler find way back home
  4. Attract strangers’ attention in case of any public incident/episode
  5. Fetch help from designated/familiar place in case of emergency