How Does One Qualify for an Emotional Support Animal?

When treating mental health disorders or emotional problems, not a lot of people consider the help of animals. Actually, emotional support animals are a legitimate way of helping a person get better or simply keeping them balanced. Since animals act on emotion and not reasoning as humans do, they are the perfect support for somebody who is suffering from emotional distress.

But how do you know that you really need an emotional support animal?


How Does One Qualify in Getting On?

First of all, according to an ESA doctor, the person who wants to get one needs to be of mature age (18+) and also be considered emotionally unstable by a licensed physician. This can be done with a regular prescription letter that the physician can prescribe.

But you still have to determine it by yourself if you really need one. We provide some helpful advice.

Determine the Benefits of Getting an Emotional Support Animal

Doctors prescribe this type of support to people who are dealing with anxiety or depression. Sometimes it is even hard getting out of the house. You don’t want to do anything except lying in your bed.

But if you have a dog, for instance, you might have to want to take care of them. Many people that are emotionally unbalanced don’t want to take care of themselves. They disregard even personal hygiene in some drastic cases. But being prompted to take care of an animal will make them get better care of themselves.

Simply by dressing up and preparing to go out of the house to take your dog for a walk will have massive benefits for such a person.

Have a Consistent Relationship With Your Physician

In order to really determine the benefits of getting an emotional support animal, you have to really believe your doctor. A physiatrist is the main person in helping an emotionally unbalanced patient get better. Having a good relationship with them is key and will lead to faster and better recovery.

If one has such a relationship with their psychiatrist it will be that much better in realizing the benefits of this solution. So if your physiatrist that you believe and trust tells you to try it, it will make you that much confident for it to work.


You Need to Keep up with Your Letters

When obtaining an emotional support animal you still have kept the letters. This is similar to renewing your prescription with a doctor. But in this case, you have to provide a letter to your physician which will further confirm that you need the animal.

Letters usually expire after a year, so you have to go and see the doctor with the letter in order to renew it for another year. But simply think of this as your regular doctor’s appointment. It is one of the steps that you need to take in order to cure this condition.

Choose and Adopt Your Emotional Support Animal

If you already have a pet, it can function as your emotional support animal. It may be even better that way as you know it and have kept it for some time already. But if you don’t you should start considering which one suits you the best.

Most people go for a dog but it does not have to be one. You can determine the type of emotional support animal based on your preferences. There is the option of going to a local shelter and choosing one there. There are plenty of animal rescue organizations that can also help you out and simply reaching out to them will help you in obtaining the animal that you need.

If you really have your heart set on a specific breed, you can always contact a breeder and get it that way.