Q: What is TheraPaw?
A: TheraPaw is a free, easy-to-use smartphone application, inspired by popular dating apps. TheraPaw uses several factors to match people with mental and physical disabilities with registered service dogs and emotional support dogs.
Q: Who can use TheraPaw?
A: TheraPaw allows service dogs and emotional support dogs, so long as they are registered with the United States Dog Registry. Anyone that has a documented mental or physical disability that qualifies them for any of these classifications of support dogs are eligible to create a TheraPaw account.
Q: What is the difference between a service dog and emotional support dog?
A: Service dogs help with performing a function for a person that is limited by a disability. Emotional support dogs help individuals with emotional problems by providing comfort and support. Emotional support dogs do not need any specialized training, whereas service dogs do. However, all dogs must be well-behaved in public.
Q: Do I qualify for a service dog or an emotional support dog?
A: You qualify for a service dog if you have mobility issues, visual impairment (blindness), hearing impairment (deafness), seizures, diabetes, PTSD, autism, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis (MS), and other physical/mental disabilities. You qualify for an emotional support dog if you have anxiety, depression, bipolar/mood disorders, panic attacks, and other emotional/psychological conditions. You will need documentation from a doctor that describes your condition(s), which will be reviewed by a member of the TheraPaw team. They will determine your eligibility for a service dog or emotional support dog.
Q: The app is asking me to upload documentation. What is this?
A: TheraPaw requires humans to upload a doctor's note that states that you have been under the care of the doctor, that the doctor has determined that you have a disability, and that the doctor believes that an emotional support dog would assist you with your disability. If you're creating a profile for a dog, you must upload a picture of the dog's identification and certification with the United States Dog Registry. All documentation will be reviewed by a member of the TheraPaw team before your profile can seen by other users, which usually takes less than 48 hours. This ensures that TheraPaw pairs the most qualified pups to the people who need it most.
Q: I want to make a profile for a dog, but they aren't registered. What do I do?
A: TheraPaw requires all dogs to be registered as a service dog or emotional support dog with the United States Dog Registry. Click the button to get started.
Q: What do I do with my matches?
A: It's up to you! Once TheraPaw displays your compatible matches, you will be able to add profiles to your "Favorites" so you don't lose them. You can directly message candidates to ask questions, or request a meeting. If you request a meeting and the other party accepts the request, both profiles will be shown with an icon that says "Match In Progress" for 30 days. Within 30 days, you are expected to follow through with the meeting. The 30 days also acts as a trial period to d. If either party decides that the pair isn't compatible, the profiles will have the "Match In Progress" icon removed and the process begins again. If it's a success, both profiles will be disabled and removed from the general match pool.
Q: Will my dog be allowed in places with a no pet policy and on airplanes?
A: Yes! Since all dogs on TheraPaw must be registered with the United States Dog Registry, they will be covered under the Fair Housing Amendments Act, Air Carrier Access Act, and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This means that all dogs are protected in all 50 states, can fly in airplanes for free, and are allowed in all housing and public places regardless of pet policy. Simply notify the airline about your dog 48 hours prior to your flight so they can provide proper accommodations.