A social dog is a dog that similar to the assistance dog has been chosen for its special qualities after tests of its mental and physical health.
The social dog has not received the same practical training as the assistance dog, as focus is on the dog being friendly, well-behaved and sociable.
A social dog may be be placed with a family with a disabled child. The child will be involved in caring for the dog, its continued training, grooming and nursing. The overall responsibility for the dog however will always be with the adults in the family.
Especially children and young people may benefit from a social dog developing a warm an close relationship. The dog will quite naturally encourage play and other physical activities, provide comfort and joy and, similar to the assistance dog, become a natural link to the surrounding world.
Adults with a physical disability who in cooperation with a helper or family take care of a dog, may apply for matching with a social dog. Caring and continued training of the dog thus becomes a joint responsibility for the applicant and the support group.
Applicants must be at least 10 years old. If the applicant is under 18 a guardian/parent must participating in the application process. Social dogs do not have access to the same public areas as service dogs, but are allowed anywhere family dogs are allowed.
A social dog is donated to the applicant against a one-time payment of DKK 2,500 to cover a life-time membership of STH.