Support for you and your child

Our highly-skilled Autism Assistance Dogs offer freedom, independence and inclusion for children with autism and their entire families.

An Autism Assistance Dog can positively impact families in many ways, providing safety for a child with autism as well as making outings and activities more possible and less stressful for all.

Thanks to personalised training and specialist support from Guide Dogs staff, an Autism Assistance Dog can learn to assist with daily tasks, providing support for children with autism, their parents/caregivers and siblings.

An Autism Assistance Dog promotes social interaction and assists in the development of the skills used to enable participation in community, social and recreational activities.

Our Autism Assistance Dogs have the same legal rights of access as a Guide Dog. Autism Assistance Dogs are clearly identified by their body coats, which provide awareness of the dog’s special circumstances and support public access and inclusion.

The program is currently available to families residing in South Australia.

A Guide Dogs trainer is walking with a young client and dog

Would my family benefit from an Autism Assistance Dog ?

Our dogs are trained to benefit children who:

  • Are aged between 3 and 8 years
  • Have a confirmed diagnosis of autism
  • Have a severe deficit in verbal and non-verbal communication skills
  • Have a severe impairment in functioning
  • Have limited to nil social interaction ability
  • Have severely repetitive behaviours
  • Have severe and frequent absconding tendencies.

Parents are required to meet additional criteria, which are available upon application.

Once accepted into the program, one or both parents must commit to a five-day in-house course at our office in Morphett Street. A subsequent three-week intensive training program is conducted, with the child, in the child’s home environment.

Please contact Guide Dogs on (08) 8203 8333 or via our online enquiry form for more details about applying for an Autism Assistance Dog.

Brochures and Fact Sheets available:

Click here to download our Autism Assistance Dog Fact Sheet

Click here to download our Autism Assistance Dog Brochure

A young girl sits in the park with her assistance dog by her side.

General enquiry form

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