Service Dog Scared of the Dark

My service dog has been going out on a lead at night as I can't get out of the house on my own. He's suddenly become afraid to go out after dark on the lead. Day time is fine. He doesn't seem phased. What are some options of what may have happened?


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September 26, 20180 found this helpful

Two thoughts...both involve making calls because there are two people/groups who are the expert on your dog.

1. Call you vet and have the pup checked out. It is possible there is a vision change or some health issue causing the fear. Rule a health issue first. The vet may have some insights but if the pup gets a clean bill of health, try #2 below.

2. Contact the service dog agency and ask them for hints/tips/ideas on what may be going on. They follow strict training protocols and you don't want to do some thing that is contradictory to the training the pup had.

Will send up lots of prayers that it all works out!! I know how important these pups are in people's words. We have family that have them and friends that have done the preliminary training before the pups go off to the service school so we know a little about this topic!

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September 26, 20180 found this helpful

He might have been scared during the night. He could have heard a noise, stepped on something, or been bothered by a human or animal.

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September 26, 20180 found this helpful

This is a matter to be concerned about and Pghgirl gave the best answer you could receive. Call the vet and the organization who helped you with your dog.


These dogs are too well trained for this to not be something important so please help your dog overcome this as soon as you can.

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September 28, 20180 found this helpful

I agree with previous posters that you need to have him checked out by a Vet and have a conversation with his original trainers. I would suggest you invest in a game camera and watch what goes on when he goes outside at night. You may not see anything, but it may bring some peace of mind. We have some heavy duty raccoons where I live that give me pause if I am outside at night.

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September 30, 20180 found this helpful

Do you live near a canyon or are there any animals outside ? Like coyotes!

In my neighborhood there are coyotes occasionally.

I would contact your local service dog agency and ask if there are some evaluations that can be done, or there are also service training courses.

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