Pre-Qualifying Questionnaire: Service Dog for a Child with Autism or Other Developmental Disabilities

For families with children with autism or other developmental disabilities, the quote from Dr. Stephen Shore rings true: “If you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism.”

Just as every child with autism is unique, so is every Service Dog program.

To that end, NEADS asks that you carefully review and complete these pre-qualifying questions to help determine if a NEADS Service Dog may be right for you and your child.


Thank you for your interest in applying for a NEADS Service Dog for a Child with Autism.

To better meet the needs of our future and current clients, we are temporarily not accepting applications. If you would like to be notified when we begin accepting applications, please begin the process by answering several pre-qualifying questions to help determine if NEADS is the right Service Dog organization for your child and your family.

If you meet our initial eligibility, you will be directed to complete an Applicant Contact Form. We will use this to contact you when we start accepting applications again.

The Application Process

Being matched with a NEADS Service Dog can be a life changing partnership, and our unique matching process relies on an exceptional attention to details – both client circumstances and canine capabilities. Your safety and the safety of our cherished canines are of highest priority.

Step 1: The Pre-Qualifying Questionnaire

Step 2: The Full Application

If you complete the Pre-Qualifying Questionnaire and are able to continue to the NEADS application, you can expect to spend about 30-45 minutes completing the application, which will ask for details about your specific situation and how a Service Dog can help. You may find it helpful to have the contact information about your child’s doctor and your landlord (if renting) prior to starting the application.

Your application will be carefully reviewed and a member of our staff will personally respond to you within 6-8 weeks of your application. Thank you for your interest in NEADS.

On-Campus Service Dog for Children Training Program

This is a 7 day small group training program that is held on NEADS campus. The primary handler/facilitator for your family will train, without your child, from Monday – Wednesday from approximately 10 am – 4 pm. Please note that your child will not be able to stay at the Foreman Client House until Wednesday evening.

Training sessions are held in classroom and community settings. On Thursday, your child, and an approved second facilitator, will join you for training. One or both facilitators and your child will stay at the Foreman Client House on Thursday evening. On Friday afternoon, you, your child and Service Dog will return home for the weekend. Training will resume on Monday morning and end on Tuesday. For families who live some distance from campus, the specific requirements for your stay will be discussed during the interview process.

If accepted for a Service Dog, when the right dog has been selected, we typically provide 4 weeks notice prior to training.