Application Process

Please take the time to review the following steps that outline PADS’ application process. If you’re ready to proceed, select the type of dog you wish to apply for below to start working through the steps.


Register to be Notified. Your submission will be logged in the order it was received and interested parties will be notified in the order they registered.

complete Application stage 1

When we have space on our wait list, you will be sent “Application Stage 1”. This will be reviewed by applicant services to ensure we are the correct school for your needs. 

Individuals that PADS will be unable to assist will be contacted within 10 business days to let them know.

    complete Application stage 2

    Finalizing the Application Package

    At this time we request a form from your doctor to help us better understand your needs, a personal statement from you and a reference letter from someone who knows you well. 


    We will schedule a personal interview with Client Services either in person at the PADS Training Centre or by Zoom.

    Wait List

    If deemed an appropriate candidate for an Assistance Dog, the individual will then be placed on PADS’ waiting list until a suitable dog has been chosen for him or her. Please note that the wait list is not first-come first-served, each dog that is ready for placement is evaluated for personality, strengths and weaknesses and matched with the most suitable candidate on the wait list.


    When a potential match is found, PADS will then contact the client about attending an upcoming Team Training Class.

    Attend Team Training

    Attend team training at the PADS campus (a $200 equipment fee is due on the first day of class).

    Follow Up

    PADS staff will follow up with the team after team training to ensure that they are settling in well and after 45 days perform a probation test.


    Course & Equipment Fee – $200

    For the ten day Team Training course, which includes all the course materials and the dog’s equipment (leash, collar, bowls, grooming supplies, etc.)

    Team Training Course

    All candidates will be required to complete the Team Training course, as specified by PADS.

    • Service Dog applicants this is a two week course.
    • Hearing and Accredited Facility Dogs require a one week training course at PADS and in their home or workplace.

    Transportation & Lodging

    All candidates traveling to the Vancouver area will be responsible for arranging their own transportation and attendant care. Lodging in the accessible PADS’ Client Centre is available upon approval by the Training Centre while attending the course. This lodging includes a private bedroom, shared bathroom and living/kitchen area.

    Each candidate must be prepared to meet his or her own financial needs during training. This can include field trip costs and the need for unique equipment or modifications, we recommend that no less than $100.00 be set aside for these purposes. Those commuting from surrounding areas may also desire local accommodations on evenings with late night field trips.

    Attendance & Tests

    • Candidates are required to attend all classes, lectures and field trips. Absences beyond one day may result in transfer of a candidate to another class or required make-up training time.
    • 80 per cent accuracy is required on all tests. Absence from a test and scores below 80 per cent will require a make-up test. All make-ups are the responsibility of the candidate and cannot be scheduled during regular training hours.

    In order to ensure the success of the new teams, family members, friends, attendants and others will not be allowed to attend training sessions without prior authorization from PADS. Individual needs, such as attendants, health care, note takers or interpreters must be arranged with PADS prior to training.

    Planning for success AFTER GRADUATION

    After graduation, PADS maintains ownership of PADS dogs and supports them throughout their working career.  As part of their ongoing relationship, clients are required to provide regular updates about their PADS dog: work habits and public behaviour on an ongoing basis. Graduates must also make themselves available for aftercare visits, both in their home and at PADS’ Training Centre.

    PADS is committed to the ongoing health and happiness of our dogs and working teams. If a client fails to handle an Assistance Dog placement according to PADS requirements, or who handles his or her dog in an abusive or neglectful way, he/she may be eliminated from the program and the dog returned to the PADS program.

    PADS Doesn’t Provide

    • Training or certification for self-trained dogs or pets
    • Seizure Alert or Seizure Response Dogs
    • Autism Dogs
    • Psychiatric Assistance Dogs
    • Guide Dogs

    For info on these types of dogs please visit Assistance Dogs International (ADI) using the link below to find a reputable program.