Dogs are man’s best friend for a reason: from police work to rescue, there is little they cannot do. A well-trained dog can help with so much more than just lack of vision, mobility or hearing: people with a vast array of mental health problems can benefit hugely from having a service dog in their lives.

However, there are some who fear that we are becoming too dependent on dogs. With a rise in people relying on their pets for emotional support, there are worries that this might undermine the assistance dog movement instead of strengthening it – for example that one single, badly-trained emotional support pet might make people wary of welcoming trained assistance dogs in their establishments.

Others say that the emotional support dogs can give to people with issues such as depression and anxiety is invaluable, and that it harms no one – rather, it saves lives and money to the NHS.

Are we becoming too dependent on dogs?

Give us your answer in the Facebook thread below, or write to editorial@dogstodaymagazine.co.uk with ‘Great Debate’ in the subject line.

Take part to this month's Great Debate – are we becoming too dependent on pet dogs for emotional support?

Posted by Dogs Today Magazine on Friday, 13 April 2018

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