PSDP is once again helping make it easy for you to be a responsible service dog handler! Respect yourself and others by spending some time figuring out how training logs are helpful and very practical.
The two printable (pdf) documents linked to below are to give you a quick idea of how you might keep track of your training with a service dog training log. See further below for more service dog training log resources.
Why to keep track of your service dog training, and what to use:
Training a service dog is serious business, and we want to help you take it seriously. The reasons for keeping an accurate service dog training log as you go include legal protection and the wise use of your time and energy.
There is no specific legal requirement in the United States compelling you to keep track of your service dog training. However, whenever an access issue lands a service dog user in court (or mediation/arbitration), it is extremely difficult for the person with a disability to win their case without clear evidence from before the incident that their dog has been thoroughly trained as a service dog. Since you may not have a choice as to whether you have to see this side of the justice system, PSDP very highly recommends that you keep clear and extensive records of your dog’s training from the beginning, including service dog training logs and occasional pictures and video.
When you keep track of your training, you give yourself the opportunity to step back and see where you’re making progress, and where it would help to devote your effort. Being able to analyze your development as a team is invaluable in focusing your time and energy where you need it most.
PSDP has provided service dog training log resources to make it easier for you to keep standardized training records. We offer no guarantee that your use of these resources will make you win any legal battle, since we can control neither how you use them nor how your particular use of them would be viewed by any arbitrator. However, these training logs for service dog training—both examples, and blank documents for your own use—should combine with the advice of our online peer guidance group to put you on the right path.
We’ve provided both a spreadsheet for keeping track of multiple entries in one location, and two options of an individual training log page, which can be used for a single day or an individual training session. It’s up to you whether to log your progress in a spreadsheet, on single pages, or both.
A filled-out service dog training log page and sample filled-out spreadsheet are at the top of this webpage. You’ll find more file formats and variations on these options on the “Training Log Downloads” page.