5 Ideal Qualities of an Emotional Support Animal

Emotional support animals (ESAs) are a way for patients to deal with mental illnesses. Their love and affectionhelp one remain calm and stable. And, they bring joy to their humans’ lives by staying by their side and creating a strong bond with them. To pick the right one for you, note these 5 characteristics your pet should ideally have:

Huggable and Affectionate

An excellent ESA is one that’s tolerant with petting and snuggles and also likes to reciprocate affection. They naturally improve one’s mood by simply being around,but most people need physical comfort for relief.So, these qualities are preferable in a pet.


Given their mental states, individuals prescribed an ESA should choose a pet that won’t further cause distress. Dogs that previously suffered from trauma, for example, tend to be aggressive and easily startled, so they’re not a great option. An animal that’s gentle and displays good manners makes the best candidate. They behave well in public and have no problems being around other people and creatures.

Easily Trained and Reliable

ESAs carry an im-paw-rtant duty, so they must be attentive and reliable companions. To be one, they must be easy to train to do basic tasks, like sitting, staying, pooping only outside or in their litter, and not touching certain objects. An obedient dog or cat who knows these commands will help their human maintain a fuss-free home.

Small- or Medium-Sized

It’s practical to have a pet of a smaller breed. They’re convenient when your home has limited space for them to move around. And, if you frequently travel, a tinier ESAwill have lesser problems riding with you in cars, trains, and even airplanes.

Not Exotic

Dogs and cats are the most common ESAs, but some people have a preference for exotic companions, like snakes, macaques, and iguanas. Though many owners are happy with them, these creatures are illegal in certain states. Plus, they’re unwelcome in commercial spaces, like malls and cafes, so picking a typical furry pet is the safe and convenient way to go.

While ESAs ideally should have these characteristics, you still need to consider your special health conditions and personal preferences. If you like spending time alone and indoors, for example, a cat or a similar creature will be better than an active, social dog for you. Talk to your therapist now to obtain an emotional support dog letter and other requirements for registry.