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Do I Qualify For An Emotional Support Animal Quiz

You can take a quiz to determine if you may qualify for an emotional support animal, but it won't be official until you speak with a licensed mental health professional and receive an ESA letter. Take our pre-assessment quiz at Pettable and get one step closer to getting the care you deserve.

Susana Bradford
April 2, 2024
April 14, 2023
18 minute read
Updated By
Matt Fleming
April 2, 2024
Expert Reviewed By:
April 14, 2023
August 18, 2021
18 minute read
April 2, 2024
Interested in an emotional support animal? Read our comprehensive guide to emotional support animals, eligibility, and how to get one for yourself.

Many people are curious whether they qualify for an Emotional Support Animal (ESA) because emotional support animals offer comfort, stress relief, and more to people coping with mental health struggles. On top of that, you might wonder if you’re eligible to receive an ESA letter you can share with landlords or others who require these documents to accommodate your ESA companions. To help, we’ve built a quick quiz to give you a start on understanding whether you might qualify. 

How To Qualify for an ESA

To qualify for an emotional support animal (ESA), you need to have a mental health or psychiatric disability. This condition must be evaluated and diagnosed by a licensed mental health professional, who can provide you with a prescription letter that outlines your need for an ESA.

Can I Take a Quiz to See If I Qualify for an Emotional Support Animal?

If you think an emotional support animal (ESA) is what you need to relieve your mental health symptoms, you can take our easy online ESA qualification quiz to determine your eligibility. Next, the experts at Pettable will pair you with a state-certified licensed mental health professional (LMHP) so you can get an official diagnosis and receive your legitimate ESA letter. 

However, some ESA services will dubiously assert that you can get an ESA letter just by taking a quiz, but that is a bogus claim. To get your ESA letter, you must have a live consultation with an LMHP, either via phone, video, or in person, after which they will write your official ESA letter. Watch out for scams trying to sell you on “certification,” which is unnecessary for having an ESA.

To make the process as easy as possible, take our quiz and trust the team at Pettable to take care of you.

How Do I Find Out If I Actually Qualify For An Emotional Support Animal

To determine if you qualify for an ESA, you’ll need to schedule a phone or video consultation with a qualified licensed mental health professional (LMHP). During the call, you’ll discuss the symptoms of your disability and talk through how they impact your life.

The LMHP will determine if you qualify for an ESA based on the information you share during your consultation. If you qualify, they will be able to write you an ESA letter. A legal ESA letter is the only document that legally classifies an ESA dog, ESA cat, or other pet as an emotional support animal.

The process for getting an ESA letter from Pettable is straightforward and stress-free:

Do I Need an Emotional Support Animal?

Anyone with a mental health disability may qualify for an emotional support animal, but you’ll need to consult with a licensed mental health professional to get their opinion on whether you need one. You may feel you need one, but your licensed healthcare professional has the final say on this. In fact, they’ll need to determine that you have a qualifying disability, like a mental or emotional disability, that would benefit from having an ESA. These struggles with mental illness can affect day-to-day activities or be brought on my major life activities to qualify someone for an emotional support animal.

If you struggle with emotional or mental health challenges, sometimes an emotional support animal can ease your symptoms and help you live a more fulfilled life. Although it doesn’t have the same extra access benefits as a service dog, an ESA can be any type of domesticated animal — in addition to canines and cats, hamsters, ferrets, birds, lizards, and snakes can all qualify. If you think an ESA can help your daily life and long-term mental health, you may be able to bring one into your home with a legitimate ESA letter.

Should your LMHP determine that you do need an emotional support animal, they’ll write you an ESA letter to make it official.

Woman with esa dog in the park

Who Can Qualify For An Emotional Support Animal

Millions of Americans live with mental and emotional health challenges, both diagnosed and undiagnosed, and every afflicted individual requires unique treatment plans. For animal lovers with these struggles, their everyday pet might provide the comfort and support they need to navigate their lives. Whether you’ve been diagnosed with a disorder, or you experience common symptoms, an LMHP can verify your eligibility and prescribe you an ESA. You can qualify for an ESA if you’re living with a(n): 

  • Mental health disorder
  • Mood disorder
  • Learning disability
  • Substance use disorder
  • Cognitive disorder
  • Motor skill disorder
  • Autism spectrum disorder

What Mental and Emotional Disorders Benefit From An ESA?

To qualify for an ESA and get an emotional support animal letter, you need to be evaluated by a mental health professional. Then they need to certify you have a recognized emotional disability that can benefit from having an ESA.

Here’s a partial list of mental and emotional health issues that may qualify you for an ESA letter:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Acute Stress Disorder
  • Panic Attacks
  • Eating Disorders
  • OCD
  • Phobias
  • PTSD
  • Personality Disorders
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Autism
  • ADHD

A mental health professional can discuss the complete list of conditions that qualify.

Emotional support animals help people struggling with a variety of mental health struggles. The health issues listed above offer only a glimpse of the types of mental illness that can negatively affect a person’s life. Emotional support animals, in addition to your doctor’s other treatments, can be life altering in the best way. If you have a condition that an emotional support animal might help you deal with, it’s worth speaking with a licensed mental health professional about potentially getting an ESA letter.

Two hikers with their dog.

Signs That You May Qualify for an Emotional Support Animal

If you’re experiencing symptoms of an emotional or mental health disorder, you may qualify to have an ESA in your home. If you fall under any of the following categories, there is a chance that you could qualify for an emotional support animal and should speak with a licensed mental health professional:

You Suffer From a Mental Health Disability

If you’re living with a mental health disability, such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, or bipolar disorder, you can qualify for an ESA. But before you can get your ESA letter, you must be officially diagnosed by an LMHP.

The Presence of Your Pet Supports Your Mental Health

Many animal lovers already know about some of the benefits of owning the perfect pet, so if you are positively affected by your love and companionship, then you likely qualify for an ESA letter.

You Lack a Healthy Daily Routine

Mental and emotional health disorders often impede an individual’s ability to establish and maintain a healthy daily routine, but with all the care they require, ESAs of all species can help. Whether it’s with a walk outside, indoor playtime, or daily feeding, taking care of your assistance animal will encourage better self-care.

Who Determines Whether I Qualify For An Emotional Support Animal?

According to ESA rules and regulations, only a licensed mental health professional can determine if you qualify for and would benefit from an emotional support animal. Mental health professionals that are authorized to write an ESA letter for housing or travel (also called an ESA prescription) include:

  • Psychiatrists
  • Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Behavioral Therapists
  • Addiction Therapists
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapists
  • Licensed Clinical Social Workers
  • Licensed Clinical Psychologists (note not all psychologists can write one)
  • Doctors qualified to conduct mental health assessments
  • Licensed Clinical Social Workers
  • Licensed Professional Counselors

When seeking an ESA letter, make sure you confirm that the professional you consult with has the skills and is licensed to determine whether you qualify for an ESA and can write you a legally recognized ESA letter.

Who Can Write an ESA Letter?

An ESA letter can only be written by a mental health professional licensed in your state. This includes all the professionals listed above.

It’s recommended that you already have a relationship with a therapist or other mental health professional before asking them to write an ESA letter for you. This is because they’ll have a better understanding of your health history and circumstances, so they can help make the best decision for you.

However, this may not always be possible. Luckily, it is perfectly fine to have your ESA letter written by an LMHP who is just beginning to get to know you – as long as you have a live consultation with them to determine your eligibility for an ESA.

A couple lounging on the couch with their dog.

How to Get an Emotional Support Animal Letter

When seeking out an emotional support animal letter, scheduling a telehealth appointment with your LMHP is another perfectly viable option. In fact, it may be much more convenient than having to deal with physically going somewhere to meet in person.

Getting an ESA letter is easy when you work with Pettable — all you need to do is take our quiz to get started. Then, we will connect you to one of our trustworthy LMHPs, who will give you a live online consultation and diagnose your condition. Once you’re approved, they will write you an official ESA letter that you can give to your housing provider to verify your legal needs.

What Other Types of Support Animals Can I Qualify For?

If your mental health disorder requires more than just emotional support, you might better benefit from having a psychiatric service dog (PSD), which can perform specific tasks or assistance. This can be anything from fetching or reminding about medications, performing deep pressure therapy (DPT), or intervening in case of an emergency. A PSD has more federally protected access rights and can accompany its owner in public accommodations and air travel. 

Many individuals who qualify for an ESA are also eligible for a PSD, so with the right dog and proper training, you could upgrade easily, especially with the help of Pettable. With its greater public access and stronger protections, a PSD can be even more life-changing than an emotional support pet.

What Is An Emotional Support Animal?

If you're considering obtaining an emotional support animal of your own, it's essential to understand exactly what emotional support animals are. According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), an emotional support animal is an animal companion that offers comfort, friendship, and sentimental assistance to those struggling with an emotional or mental disability. ESAs can come from any of the places that pets come from. An emotional support animal can be adopted from shelters, purchased from breeders or pet stores, or obtained from anywhere else that a pet could come from.

With an ESA Letter, emotional support animals can help those struggling with major life activities, who have difficulty falling asleep, are frequently worried, or whose life is severely affected by any mental condition diagnosed by a licensed mental health professional. An emotional support animal can provide unconditional love to alleviate symptoms of depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, and many other mental health illnesses.

While dogs are the most common type of emotional support animal, any species of animal can qualify to become a legitimate emotional support animal. As long as an emotional support cat, horse, bird - or any other domesticated animal - is proven to alleviate at least one aspect of a person's mental and emotional disorders, they can become their owner's official emotional support animal.

Emotional Support Animals vs. Pets

While it is widely acknowledged that animals can contribute to feelings of calmness, happiness, and overall fulfillment, there remains a distinction between emotional support animals and traditional pets. Current research conducted by professionals presents an inconclusive picture regarding the unique therapeutic benefits of emotional support animals, however, ask any animal owner and they will give you qualitative data on how much their animal improves their lives.

Unfortunately, studies have yet to definitively establish that emotional support animals offer discernible advantages beyond those provided by regular pets. Notably, a 2016 study published in the journal Professional Psychology: Research and Practice highlights the ambiguity surrounding the therapeutic efficacy of emotional support animals. The study suggests that empirical evidence supporting the effectiveness of emotional support animals in alleviating psychological disorders is limited, inconsistent, and emerging.

Despite the lack of conclusive evidence, many individuals and mental health professionals advocate for the significance of emotional support animals in enhancing emotional and mental well-being. For numerous owners, the presence of an emotional support animal plays a pivotal role in their daily lives, offering companionship and support that extends beyond what a conventional pet may provide. The act of including these animals in everyday activities, such as running errands or traveling, can profoundly improve the quality and meaning of life for their owners.

Emotional support animals hold a distinct status under specific laws, granting them access to certain spaces where ordinary pets may not be permitted, including housing and some travel accommodations. While they differ from traditional pets in legal recognition and prescribed roles, emotional support animals remain indispensable to their owners, serving as a crucial component of their medical treatment by offering essential emotional support during stressful events, panic attacks, and often helping their owners engage in healthier behaviors.

A cat owner snuggling with their cat

Emotional Support Animals vs. Service Animals

One essential factor to remember about emotional support animals is that they are very different from service animals. Understanding these significant differences is crucial to allow you to correctly choose and certify an animal that best satisfies your needs. Below are the significant differences between emotional support animals and service animals.

Service Animals Require Special Training

Many people believe that emotional support animals and service animals are interchangeable, but these two types of animals are trained for separate tasks. A service animal is specially trained to perform a function or job for an owner with a physical, intellectual, or emotional disability. An emotional support animal is more of an emotional companion for the owner to help with major life activities. A service animal may still be able to provide the comfort of an emotional support animal. Still, it has been trained to complete tasks that a support animal will not, such as checking blood pressure or alerting others if their owner's health or well-being is in danger.

Service Animals Are Protected Under the ADA

Service animals are usually needed more frequently as they help the owner with physical tasks. Therefore, they are offered legal protections through the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) that emotional support animals do not get. You can take a psychiatric service dog almost anywhere you go, and they cannot legally be denied access. On the other hand, an emotional support animal doesn't share the same legal protections. It's important to understand that if you have an emotional support animal, they may not be allowed into all areas that a service animal even with an ESA letter. Legal protection of an emotional support animal is limited to housing and air travel. However, there may be businesses that will allow you to bring your emotional support animal inside, so you'll have to check with them beforehand.

Service Animal Requirements

There is a set of requirements in order to obtain a service or emotional support animal. Any animal can become an official emotional support animal if they have a letter written and signed by a licensed mental health professional. However, only dogs are allowed to become psychiatric service dogs as long as they meet a set of criteria. The person looking to acquire a PSD needs to have a disabling mental illness diagnosed by a licensed mental health professional. Though not a requirement, it is recommended that the mental health professional writes a PSD Letter to certify the person's need for a psychiatric service dog. A service dog also requires special training that aids the person with their mental mental illness. Pettable offers an online PSD training program that teaches people to self-train their dog on the required tasks to become a psychiatric service dog. To get started with our PSD training program take our online quiz which will pre-screen your needs. Emotional support animals do not require training, and an ESA letter written by a licensed mental health professional is sufficient certification.

How Does an Emotional Support Animal Help Your Mental Health?

The therapeutic effects a dog, cat, or other animal can have on their owners have been well studied. While a service animal helps individuals live an independent life with physical disabilities, emotional support animals can help people with a disabling mental illness. Many people with anxiety, depression, or other mental health illnesses benefit from the presence of an emotional support animal.

For some people, having a dog or pet as an emotional support animal can make a real difference in the quality and length of their life. Studies confirm that dogs and other pets improve people’s happiness and overall health and can even extend life for people in their 60s, 70s, and 80s. Emotional support dogs are companion animals that show a significant benefit in improving a person’s mental health.

Woman with esa dog on sofa

Dogs, Cats, and Other Pets Help You Get Outside

One of the ways emotional support animals support their owners’ health and well-being is by helping people stay active. Caring for a pet keeps you busy and can help you get exercise and fresh air while walking a dog, taking a cat in for a check-up, or running to the pet store for some treats. The combination of getting out in the world and getting regular exercise can have a big impact on many mental health issues.

Emotional Support Animals Help You Socialize

Having an ESA companion can also help people socialize more and create a broader support circle. There are many more people with ESAs than you might expect. When you discover other people who are helped by having an ESA, it can be much easier to connect with them and talk about the good things your ESA does for you, too.

That can create opportunities to help other people living with a disability or to reach out to others who deal with anxiety or depression. For many people, being of service to others is a great way to feel part of a larger community and also help themselves feel better.

Emotional Support Animals Can Help Quiet the Mind

Caring for and thinking about the well-being of an ESA is often a real help for people dealing with emotional and mental wellness challenges.

Many folks who live with an emotional support dog, cat, or other pet find that having a companion helps them focus outside themselves. That makes it easier to avoid rumination (overthinking) and calm social or other anxieties that are often part of conditions ESAs can help people deal with.

Emotional Support Animals and Service Animals Give Unconditional Love

Another thing that frequently helps with a mental disability or emotional disorder is knowing you have a source of unconditional love and support. Often, ESA owners report that the love they get from their animals is some of the most effective treatment they’ve found for the emotional and other health issues they struggle with. For many people, getting an ESA letter that lets them live or travel with a loving companion is critical to improving their overall well-being.

Man hugging esa dog

Emotional Support Animal Laws That You Should Know

Before pursuing the path to obtain an emotional support animal, it’s a good idea to learn some of the ESA laws in our country.

Fair Housing Act

The Fair Housing Act (FHA) provides ESAs with federal protection when it comes to housing. Regardless of the building’s pet policy, your landlord must make reasonable accommodations for your ESA. The Fair Housing Act applies to all emotional support animals, regardless of your animal’s size, age, or breed. You also should not be required to pay any fees or deposits to your landlord to be allowed to live with your ESA.

Just make sure your accommodation request is reasonable (for example, you’re not asking to bring 5 Great Danes into a tiny studio apartment), and that your ESA poses no health or safety threat to others. You’ll also need to provide your landlord with your official ESA letter to prove your eligibility for your service animal.

Air Carrier Access Act

Before January 11, 2021, the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) required airlines to allow passengers to fly with their ESAs for free. Unfortunately, The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has since altered these rules so that airlines are no longer required to allow ESAs on board.

Some airlines, however, still have their ESA programs in place. It’s a good idea to contact the airline ahead of time to find out their unique policies and if they may be willing to accommodate you and your emotional support animal, provided you send them a copy of your ESA letter and any other forms they may ask for.

If you’re unable to find an ESA-friendly airline, your animal will need to fly with you as any other pet would, including any applicable regulations or fees for flying with pets. Alternatively, if your ESA is a dog you may be able to make the pet a psychiatric service dog. PSDs are eligible to fly on airlines in the cabin alongside you. To qualify, you must be diagnosed with a mental disability and your dog must have received training on special tasks to assist you with that disability. Furthermore, the dog must behave obediently in public spaces. It is possible to self-train your dog on the requirements and Pettable offers a PSD training program to assist in this task. For more information take our brief online assessment and find out if a psychiatric service dog is right for you.

A woman running with her ESA dog.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Does Pettable Work with Me to Get An ESA?

Here at Pettable, we work hard to design the best ESA letter process for our users. One significant benefit of working with us is you won't have to show up in person at a medical clinic in order to get certified as needing an emotional support animal.

We also make sure all of our clinicians have deep experience writing ESA letters. They have seen pretty much everything you can imagine when it comes to helping people with ESA letters. Whatever you run into, they’ll be there to support you.

Fill Out Our Assessment

The first step is to fill out our online ESA assessment (click below to start taking it).

This assessment will ask for information that helps us match you with the right professional.

Pick From Our ESA Letters

Next, you'll let us know if you need a housing letter, a travel letter, or a combination of both. If you absolutely need your pet with you when you travel on any airline, you can also choose our psychiatric service dog training option, though you will be required to train your dog prior to them traveling with you.

If you want more information, read our article on psychiatric service dogs.

Sign Off On HIPAA and Telehealth Forms

Once you book your consultation, we'll send you a few additional privacy and consent forms that allow us to connect you with one of our clinicians. As soon as you return them, you’ll be ready to start the process of certifying your emotional support animals.

Book Your Consultation

When we have all your forms, we'll connect you directly to the appropriate clinician to schedule an appointment to complete a mental health evaluation and discuss how your ESA will help you with your specific mental or emotional health and wellness issues.

Receive Your ESA Letter Within 24 Hours Of Your Consult

Once the assessment is successfully completed and the clinician agrees that your emotional support animals are a necessary part of your care, they will write a personalized and legally correct ESA letter. When you work with Pettable, you have the option of receiving that letter from your clinician within 24 hours of your consultation. There is a small fee for booking an express consultation.

Are There Any Other Fees Associated With Using Pettable?

Your one-time payment at checkout covers your consultation with your clinician and your letter certifying one or two ESAs. If you require a letter for additional ESAs, we are happy to evaluate your unique situation and write additional letters at cost if needed. In general, it’s a max of 2 animals per letter. 

What If I Pay For A Consultation And Don't Qualify For An Emotional Support Animal Through Pettable?

Legitimate services that offer to help you get an ESA letter should provide you with a refund if you don't get approved for an ESA letter stating you qualify for an ESA after consulting with one of our licensed mental health professionals.

At Pettable, we go beyond that. We believe so strongly in the quality of our service that we guarantee your ESA letter will work for your specific needs. If it ever doesn’t, we’ll work to fix it and, if we can’t, we’ll refund your fee.

How Do I Start The Process To Get An ESA With Pettable?

It's easy to get started and be on your way to having your emotional support animals legitimized. The steps are:

  1. Fill out our assessment here
  2. Book your consultation at the end of the assessment
  3. Sign off on the forms we'll send you
  4. Schedule a time with your clinician for a phone consult
  5. Get your ESA letter within 24 hours of your consult

Pretty easy!

What Protections Do I Have Under Federal Law

Housing-related protections are regulated by the Department of Health and Urban Development (HUD). According to the HUD regulations, if your letter is written by a licensed mental health professional who has made a diagnosis that you have a qualifying disability, landlords must accept your letter and make reasonable accommodations to have your ESA(s) with you.

A landlord can only take the following actions if you tell them you have a legal ESA letter:

  • Ask to see your ESA letter
  • Ask you to confirm you have a disability (but not what that disability is)
  • Ask if your disability is improved by having an emotional support animal (but not how they help)
  • Contact your clinician to verify that you have consulted with them personally to determine that you are eligible to have an ESA

Which Emotional Support Animals Are Allowed On Planes?

Because of changing federal laws, assistance animal rules vary from airline to airline. Most emotional support animals allowed on planes are ones that are well-behaved, don’t cause a health or safety hazard, and can likely fit at a person’s feet or in a paid seat. If your emotional support pet is a miniature horse, they will likely not let it fly with you. It’s best to call airlines ahead of time and ask about their specific rules. They may ask more about your pet’s training or breed. They may also ask for a copy of your letter to show that your pet is a legitimate emotional support animal.

A girl hugging her ESA dog in the woods

Do I Need A Letter For A Service Dog?

Many people who have physical disabilities require a service dog. Different types of service dogs include seeing dogs, hearing dogs, mobility assistance dogs, and psychiatric service dogs. These service dogs help people perform a specific task as a result of their specific disability. Unlike service dogs, emotional support pets don’t usually help individuals with a visible disability. Most service dog owners don’t need a letter from a medical professional in certain situations because the medical condition is visible. But anyone who needs a service dog to assist them due to mental or emotional conditions that are not visible to other people might need a letter.

If you tell landlords, airlines, or others that you need to have a psychiatric service dog to assist in dealing with a medical condition that is not visible, you be required to fill out a form verifying the dog's training as a service animal. This form is the only documentation needed to travel with a PSD, though the dog will need to be trained and act obediently in airports and on planes. If you wish to train your dog as a PSD we offer an online training program that will teach you how to. To begin, take our brief 3-minute assessment and select “PSD training” at the end.

How do you qualify for an emotional support animal?

To qualify for an emotional support animal, you must meet with a licensed mental health professional who determines that you a) have a mental health disability, and b) your condition is alleviated or reduced by the presence of your support animal.

Some common mental and emotional disabilities that may benefit from having an ESA include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Acute stress disorder
  • Panic attacks
  • Eating disorders
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Phobias
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Personality disorders
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Autism
  • ADHD

Once it’s determined that you meet these criteria, your LMHP can write you an official ESA letter.

How to get your dog certified as an emotional support animal?

Technically, there is no “certification” or “registration” for emotional support animals. However, some people use these terms to mean getting an ESA letter that legitimizes your animal as an ESA. Sites claiming to offer certification or registration for emotional support animals without having to meet with a licensed medical professional may not be legitimate.

To make your dog an ESA, you must obtain an ESA letter. To do this, you must have a live mental health evaluation with a licensed mental health professional. Following this meeting, if the LMHP determines you’re eligible for an ESA, they’ll write a letter stating that you have a mental health disability that is improved by having your emotional support dog with you.

How to get an emotional support cat?

Emotional support animals aren’t only dogs. Emotional support animals can be most kinds of animals, though it may be best to avoid owning an exotic animal to avoid added stress in your life. Emotional support animals can also be cats, hedgehogs, ferrets, and cats. Cats can make wonderful emotional support animals. If you already have a cat, you can make them an emotional support animal by meeting with a licensed mental health professional to determine your eligibility for an ESA letter.

If you have an ESA letter, but no animal, you might seek out a cat from a friend whose cat has just had a litter of kittens or consider rescuing one from an animal shelter.

How to get an emotional support dog?

If you’re ESA-approved and still don’t own a dog, you have a few choices. You can find a friend whose dog has had puppies, buy from a puppy farm, or rescue one from a dog shelter.

It’s best to avoid getting a dog from a puppy farm, as these tend to treat their animals quite poorly. This can sometimes lead to anxiety or even aggression in the puppies. In addition, buying from a puppy farm only gives them money to help keep them in business, and also tends to be much more expensive than caring for one that’s been rescued from a shelter.

Why Work With Pettable to Get an ESA Letter?

At Pettable, we are committed to helping people overcome the hurdles that landlords, airlines, and others can raise when you need an emotional support animal in your life.

Our combination of highly qualified mental health professionals, affordable fees, and our guarantee that the letter you obtain through Pettable will work for you gives you great value and peace of mind.

We can’t wait to help you. Get started today by taking our quick quiz.

04/02/2024 Update: Article was reviewed for accuracy by Jennifer Bronsnick, MSW, LCSW, and updated to better represent the research around the impact of emotional support animals vs. pets.

Meet the author:
Susana Bradford

Susana is an avid animal lover and has been around animals her entire life, and has volunteered at several different animal shelters in Southern California. She has a loving family at home that consists of her husband, son, two dogs, and one cat. She enjoys trying new Italian recipes, playing piano, making pottery, and outdoor hiking with her family and dogs in her spare time.

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