Application Process

It is with great excitement that we announce our online registration platform is now LIVE! We would like to thank you all for your patience over the last year as this has been a huge project and has been developed by our volunteers in their free time outside of their full time jobs!

Please get in touch via phone or email if you would like more information. An application link will be sent to those that have called to discuss the process. We are happy for someone to call on your behalf if you are uncomfortable speaking on the phone.

Please note:  submitting a full application does not mean the applicant is automatically approved for membership.

It is necessary for your Dr or psychiatrist to complete our downloadable questionnaire, and for your Veterinarian to complete our downloadable vet form as part of the online registration process.

To apply you do not need to be registered as disabled however you will need the following to apply:

  • Be 18 yrs or over
  • Minimum 1 years mental health diagnosis that severely impacts your day to day living
  • Be a U.K. Citizen or have an ILR (Indefinite Leave to Remain) status
  • Have a suitable dog breed under the age of 5 years (if closer to 5 then will need to already have a high level of obedience training) Older dogs are considered on a case by case basis. Please see Getting Started section if you do not already have a dog
  • A sponsor, someone who would look after the dog if you are ill or unable to

PADs Foundation help people with long term mental health diagnosis (supported by their Dr or Psychiatrist) to select and train a dog up to become their assistance dog. Emotional support and Therapy dogs do not have public access rights. Training can take up to 2 years and is carried out by handler (applicant) and their chosen trainer (minimum of one session per month training with trainer). PADs Foundation will offer support from how to select a suitable breed, how to find a suitable breeder, trainer as well as behaviour criteria and assessment. Please note we do not accept Toy, Brachycephalic or banned breeds. A dog that is to be trained as an assistance dog needs to be physically able to perform the specific mitigating behaviours to assist your disability.

If your application is successful you and your dog will be considered as In Training Members of PADs Foundation. Please note that you will not be allowed access with your dog until it has reached International Public Access Standards and performs a minimum of three task related behaviours. As In Training Members you and your trainer will work through our In Training Guide to reach the International Public Access Standards. Please note that not all dogs will successfully reach the high standard of training required. Once you have passed the International Public Access Standards and the dog has successfully demonstrated the required mitigating behaviours you and your dog will have public access rights under the Equality Act 2010. If you would like at this point to become full members of PADs Foundation we will issue you with membership cards and PADs harness which is useful to raise awareness of assistance dogs. Please note that it is not a legal requirement for the dog to wear an assistance dog harness. In order to maintain full membership your dog will be required to have a full annual vet check (our own document to be complete by vet) and an annual behaviour check.

PADs Foundation is a young charity run by a small number of volunteers and as such we are currently unable to provide volunteer trainers for everyone, however we are in the early stages of nationwide recruitment. Despite this we realise that we won’t be able to provide volunteer trainers for everyone, we do provide guidelines on how to find a suitable trainer. PADs Foundation will support you and your trainer through the training process.