Application Process

The first step to applying for a Paws and Affection dog is to read the below criteria and eligibility requirements. If you (or your child) meet these requirements and are interested in applying for a Paws and Affection dog please call the phone number below to discuss the application process with us further.

Criteria and Eligibility Requirements

Paws and Affection has the mission to train and place service, facility, and companion dogs with young people who have a range of disabilities in the greater Philadelphia area and to educate the public about service dogs and their role in the community. 

Our dogs are not trained as guide dogs for people who are blind, hearing assistance dogs, seizure alert dogs, or autism support dogs.

Criteria for Applying for a Paws and Affection Service Dog

  • Child lives within a 1 hour driving distance of Merion, PA 19066 and can provide own transportation to and from our facility.
  • Child has a disability that causes functional limitations.
  • Child is 9 to 20 years old at the time of applying.
  • Child is able to communicate verbally or with a speech generating device.
  • Child has no known allergies to dogs.
  • Child lives in a smoke-free household.

Eligibility Requirements for Having a Paws and Affection Service Dog

  • Child lives in a stable home environment where the emotional, physical, and financial needs of the working dog will be met.
  • Child possesses sufficient cognitive functioning and is mature enough to actively participate in the training and learning process with the dog.
  • If the household has a pet(s), P&A will assess if the environment is suitable for a P&A working dog on a case-by-case basis.
  • All parents/legal guardians and household members must be agreeable to having a working dog for the child. They must all agree to be active participants in facilitating the success of the child/dog team as well as the safety and well-being of the dog.

If you feel you and your family meet these requirements we would love to get to know you and take the next step in the application process. Please call our office to talk to a Paws and Affection staff member. 610.949.0490 or email us at: