About the Author

GEM ARAGON

I am a 22-year-old service dog handler and owner-trainer. I’m currently a junior trainer with Noble Beast Dog Training in Denver, CO. I worked at the Dumb Friends League in Denver, CO for 1.5 years as an adoptions counselor. In addition to my job with the League, I have a few composite years of experience working with dogs through dog-sitting and walking, and doggy daycare.

I have an in-home psychiatric service dog named Bones. Bones retired from public access a year ago due to a change in my health and need for a bigger dog, as well as not having quite the right temperament for public access. However, because of an increase in mental health problems, he recently came partially out of retirement and does occasional outings with me. 

After a few years in the service dog community—a lesser-known sector of the world—I’ve noticed a lack of easily-accessible information for handlers and trainers. Though laws and training standards are well-known to some, I know from personal experience that the proper way to acquire and train a service dog isn’t common knowledge.

This blog is a personal project, a gathering of information for those who need it for any number of reasons. Please feel free to reach out with questions, requests, or just to chat!