Royal Poodles as Emotional Support Dogs

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Poodles are highly intelligent dogs who love to learn and keep active. Royal Poodles as emotional support dogs, or ESD, excel in both support and guidance and are overall an anti-stress animal.

There are three sizes of poodles that are recognized by the American Kennel Club: toy, miniature, and standard, but there is the fourth size of a poodle that is called a “Royal.” The Royal is breeder specific. A Royal poodle is larger than a standard weighing up to 90lbs.

The personal characteristics of a Royal make them good candidates to be emotional support dogs, but there are some limitations due to size.

What Is an Emotional Support Dog?

An emotional support dog (ESD), or a companion dog, is a canine that is prescribed by a licensed therapist, psychotherapist or psychiatrist to offer support to someone who struggles with an emotional or mental disability such as:

  • Social Anxiety Disorder
  • General Anxiety Disorder
  • Post-Partum Depression
  • Panic Disorder
  • PTSD
  • Impulse Control Disorder
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • Phobias & Fears
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Benny and Brie ready for a day on the job – from @benny.and.brie

ESD dogs are not trained to accomplish specific tasks such as opening doors or picking an object up, unlike service dogs. However, they do have the important job of offering comfort and attention to their handlers when the person starts struggling with either an emotional or mental difficulty.

Emotional support dogs have access to certain rights over and above what an everyday pet would have. This is due to the fact that they are required to be by their individual’s side most of the time.  Emotional support dogs are granted:

  • By-pass no pet policies when obtaining housing
  • Fly with their owners
  • Do both of these things for free

Royal poodles can offer this emotional support, comfort, and stability to their owners, and without them, there would be a significant chance that these people might have a compromised quality of life. Royal poodles can certainly meet the qualifications of a good emotional support dog.

Why Would a Royal Poodle Make a Good Support Dog?

Poodles are one of the most intelligent and obedient dogs. Their eagerness to please their owners means training is quick and easy. A royal poodle’s strong intellect allows them to meet the mental challenges of being personal support. Their athleticism is an added bonus as their love to keep busy means they won’t be overwhelmed by chaos or pressure. The fact that they can adapt easily to different situations while remaining focused on their person is also another benefit of this breed. A Royal’s calm demeanor and ability to adapt means they can be a great asset as an emotional support dog.

Can Your Royal Poodle be Trained as an Emotional Support Dog?

ESDs do not require the extensive training that service dogs do. Yet having them learn a specific technique such as Deep Pressure Therapy is helpful. This therapy is a process to help calm people who have anxiety, autism, self-harming behavior, or stress. The poodle is taught to apply pressure to the body, legs, or arms to bring a sense of calm to the person under duress.

Toy poodles can lie easily across a chest and miniatures or standards can place their heads or feet on the lap or legs in the attempts to calm the situation. Royals can do this therapy as well but must take their larger size into consideration. Their head in the lap, or on the legs, is fine, but the weight of their body could be overpowering. Training must include specific ways they can calm without being too strong.

With the use of treats, Royals can be taught “paws up” and “paws down” to support whatever issue has arisen. Treats such as Zukes Mini Naturals Peanut Butter Treats are helpful in getting to participate and become skilled as required.

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Basic Obedience

Along with specific training, your Royal poodle needs basic doggy manners if they are to be allowed special housing and airline privileges. They need to be housetrained and leash trained with no jumping, aggressive behavior or begging for food. To accomplish this list of training items, you will need to:

  • Set aside a regular time each day to train manners
  • Keep lessons fun and quick
  • When working with your Royal poodle, correct them for things that are wrong and give lots of praise for right
  • Keep it simple – Teach one thing at a time
  • Praise is important. They want to make you happy, so give them some love for good work
  • Never use physical punishment – use the word NO to correct but do not be aggressive
  • Wait to your pup is old enough to learn basic manners then move on to emotional support training. You don’t want to do too much too fast

Items to Help with Basic Training & Travel

Once your Royal poodle is designated as good as an emotional support dog, they will need the proper items for when for both local and away travel with their handler. A proper leash and collar are needed for well-mannered walking as an ESD.

Trying a No Pull Harness and a Buckle-Down Collar will do this.

If the Royal is going outside of the neighborhood, then you will need items to keep your Royal happy and helpful. Items for both car and flight safety, as well as comfort, are required. Bring size-appropriate items such as:

Making sure your Royal poodle is content and well mannered while they travel is an important part in retaining their status and privileges offered as an emotional support dog.


Although Royal poodles are the biggest of their breed, they are still more than capable of being a good emotional support dog. Their characteristics and intellect make them good candidates for the job. Their size can be somewhat of an issue for comfortable travel or some particular therapy’s, but both can be managed with proper training and planning.

Royal poodles can be a big part of helping an individual navigate a stressful world. They can be a valuable asset as both a trained dog and a good canine companion.

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