Emotional Support Animal Assessments
What is an Emotional Support Animal, and do I qualify for the assessment?
An emotional support animal is a pet that provides therapeutic benefit to the owner through companionship and affection. A licensed psychiatrist may prescribe an ESA to assist with symptoms of depression, anxiety, and PTSD, for example. The Canadian Transportation Agency allows people to travel with their assistance animals. This means that Canadians may travel with their ESAs on most public transportation offered by the Canadian government. This includes trains, planes, and ferries.
Why have an Emotional Support Animal?
When going through life transitions or struggling with depression or anxiety, having a pet can be incredibly helpful in feeling the compassion necessary in a difficult time. Pets can help keep someone accountable and on a schedule and be a positive companion. Pets provide unconditional positive regard, which is very healing and helps to foster growth and change when in a trying time. The reason to designate your pet an emotional support animal is that certain living spaces don’t allow pets, but it may be medically necessary for you to keep your pet with you to continue to stay healthy. Please contact Manor Clinic for more details on what an ESA is and if you may qualify for one.
What is the difference between an Emotional Support Animal and a Service Animal?
A service animal is specifically trained to assist someone with daily tasks. In contrast, an emotional support animal provides companionship and affection to its owner and does not have to pass a test to perform certain tests. Service Animals are only dogs or miniature horses, whereas ESA can be various different animals.
Are there size limits on ESA animals?
However, there is no size limit; certain airlines restrict ESA pets to be either a dog, cat or miniature horse.
Can I take an ESA on a plane?
Yes - if the animal is a dog, cat or miniature horse, you have a certified letter from a licensed mental health professional, and you have provided the airline with advanced notice.
ESA evaluation process:
To be evaluated for an ESA, you will participate in a clinical interview/diagnostic evaluation where your mental health, psychological, family, medical history, and overall psychological functioning will be assessed.
After the completion of the evaluation, you will receive a report that will include the following:
1. Your provider’s name, credential, phone number, fax number, email address, and license number.
2. A DSM-V diagnosis of a mental health condition. This will include the nature, frequency, and severity of symptoms, as well as whether or not any medications are being taken and their side effects, if relevant. How can this mental health condition or disability impair one or more aspects of your life?
3. A recommendation (or list of recommendations) for how this ESA will assist you based on the mental health diagnosis provided.
Please contact Manor Clinic for more information about ESA assessment.