Taking care of a pet is one of the most rewarding experiences a person can have in their lifetime. Our pets provide us with the warmth and companionship we need to get through the day and become genuine members of our families.
But not all pet and owner relationships are the same. There are several classifications your pets could fall into depending on the role they are playing in your life.
Some animals serve us merely by existing and being our friends, while others may have skills, they use to assist their owners with various tasks. These distinctions are factors in determining what kind of pet is right for you.
If you live in the state of Illinois and are looking to add a furry friend to your family, here are four different classifications of domestic animals that you might be interested in adopting.
1. House Pets
This is the simplest classification of domestic animals, as an ordinary house pet is not expected to fulfill special obligations outside of providing companionship to their owner.
A house pet serves as an extra member of the household. And for some pet owners, that is all that is required.
If you do not suffer from any form of disability or emotional need that could be mitigated by assistance from a trained animal, a standard house pet may be the right fit for you.
2. Emotional Support Animals
An emotional support animal, or ESA, is an animal whose primary obligation is to provide comfort to mitigate the effects of their owner’s disability or mental health status.
An emotional support animal doesn’t need any training to be classified as such and can be a member of any species. All an emotional support animal needs to do is provide their owner with comfort, affection, and companionship.
It is essential to make this distinction because according to United States law, an emotional support animal is not considered a pet.
If you live in Illinois and feel you would benefit an ESA, you may wish to consider adopting an emotional support animal or having an existing pet registered as an emotional support animal Illinois.
3. Service Dogs
Not to be confused with an emotional support animal, a service dog is a dog that assists an owner with a disability by performing specific tasks.
This could mean helping a visually impaired person navigate their surroundings, alerting a person with epilepsy that they are going to have a seizure or any number of other things.
Service dogs require specific training to fulfill their intended functions, and so they need to undergo a certification process.
If you are an Illinois resident living with a disability, you may wish to consider adopting a trained service dog to help assist you with everyday tasks.
4. Therapy Dogs
Therapy dogs are dogs that have been trained to provide support, affection, and comfort to populations of individuals that are not their owners.
Therapy dogs are normally taken by their owners to hospitals, schools, nursing homes, and hospices to provide comfort to people in these places. They are traditionally owned by people who work in such environments who are interested in helping others to alleviate their day-to-day struggles.
If you live in Illinois and work or volunteer in an environment where people could benefit from these services, you may wish to look into adopting a therapy dog.
There are many options for pet owners. It’s essential to make sure you make an informed decision, so you can choose a pet that is just right for you.