Since the stress and social isolation that so often comes with modern life can turn a mental illness into something that's very chronic and debilitating, it's not surprising that you'd want a dog with you throughout your day to cheer you up. Luckily, there are plenty of emotional support dogs out there waiting for an owner, and US federal law requires several ordinary restrictions against dogs to be waived when you have an established need for one. Go over these two types of animal restrictions that won't apply to an emotional support dog and see whether they're relevant to you.

Restrictions In Apartments And Rental Properties

Under the right circumstances, thanks to the Fair Housing Act, you're able to keep an emotional support dog in an apartment that your landlord would claim is too small for pets. In fact, even an untrained dog can be permitted, as long as the mental illness impairing your life is well-documented by a doctor or therapist.

Though an extra pet fee won't be required, you'll still be responsible for any damage the animal causes. Therefore, if you're not able to get access to a dog that's already been trained, make sure that the dog you do settle on is at least housebroken and mellow enough to not run around your rooms all the time.

Restrictions On Passenger Planes

Since sitting in a crowded airplane can be very stressful, it's understandable that you'd want to bring your emotional support dog on-board directly instead of stuffing it in the cargo hold. Fortunately, as long as you have all the proper documentation required by the Air Carrier Access Act, you'll be able to accomplish this goal. Doing this will also save you a lot of money with airlines that charge exponentially more money for every suitcase or storage container you have to bring along.

Make sure that you schedule the flight well in advance and inform the airline about the situation with your dog at least a few days before the flight time so that they have no excuse to refuse you. They'll be required to give you reasonable accommodations. You can even ask to specially board the plane ahead of most of the other passengers!

It's also a good idea to restrict your dog's diet in the hours before the flight. Together with a good potty break before you leave for the airport, this will do a lot to prevent unnecessary accidents while you're in the air. For more information, contact a company like Next Generation Psychology.