Apply for a canine companion

What is a canine companion?

A canine companion is placed in a home where there is an adult or a child with a physical disability or condition who would benefit from the companionship and emotional support a dog can provide, but where practical support from the dog is not required. These special dogs also give other social benefits of dog ownership, such as friendship and reduced loneliness.

Our canine companions will have reached a level of socialisation and behaviour during our training programme but for various reasons, it has been identified that they are not suited to a working life. For their wellbeing, they are instead placed as a companion and able to provide an individual or family with all the associated benefits of dog ownership such as routine, regular activity, a sense of purpose, and reduced loneliness due to an increased feeling of being part of a community.

All dogs and all canine companion homes are different, so these special dogs are still carefully matched with families or individuals, who after an initial settling-in period, would be fully adopted by their new family. It is therefore necessary that these families can meet all of the care needs and costs involved in having one of these dogs in their lives including providing adequate exercise and health care.



In so many ways, our wellness and happiness have been improved – a lot more exercise for all of us, meeting people in different neighbourhoods when we take Copper to various parks/lakes, feeling of community as we recognise people that we see every week, and more laughter and joy thanks to our lovely dog! – Home of canine companion, Copper



Buddy has made a huge difference to my life as well as the rest of the family. I am disabled by Parkinson’s Disease, and I take Buddy out for a good walk every day. We meet lots of people and talk to nearly all of them.

I have made so many new friends and had such a good time. I look forward to every day and life is much better – also it keeps me active both physically and mentally.– Home of canine companion, Buddy  


Interested in finding out more?

If you or a family member has a physical disability or condition and would like to find out more about our family support dogs and whether you would be eligible, please see our Family support dog applicant information pack here or click the button below.

Download the canine companion applicant information pack


How do I apply for a canine companion?

We are currently closed to new applications but please see more information below about applying in future. We will update this website page and our social media at least 4 weeks before there are any updates on opening to new applications. (Page last updated July 2024)

Thank you for your interest in applying for a canine companion.

We are currently closed to new applications for canine companions. Due to the application process, matching process, and the support provided during the initial settling-in period, our canine companions will be placed within certain areas. You will find details of these areas on this page when our next reopening dates are published. We recommend keeping an eye on this website page and our social media for announcements.

To manage demand for our services and the time that applicants are on our waiting list, we will open our waiting list at specific times and to specified locations.

The information you will need to provide and how to make a first-stage application for a canine companion will appear on this page at least four weeks prior to the next opening date. This is to ensure that you have enough time to check your eligibility and prepare for making your first-stage application.

Due to such high demand, upon receiving all first-stage applications, a set number of these applications will then be automatically and impartially selected by a computer program, to go through to second-stage assessment. This approach enables all potential applicants a fair opportunity to apply, whilst enabling us to best manage our wait times for those who do go on to join our waiting list within our resources available to support our canine companion homes in all regions of the UK.

Other services and options

Canine partner assistance dog

Fully jacketed assistance dogs with public access rights. Suitable for those who need assistance within the home and in public.

Canine home assistance

Highly trained dogs placed with disabled adults to provide practical support and assistance in the home but not in public.

Rehome a Canine Partners dog

Dogs that are unsuited to life as an assistance dog due to health or behavioural requirements, but would make a loving pet dog.

Alternatively, if you need assistance dog support for a different disability, condition or impairment, please visit the ADUK website where various assistance dog charities cater for many different needs and requirement.

After reading the above information, if you have any specific enquiries or questions about applying for a canine partner, please contact us by emailing or calling 01730 716042.

Thank you for your patience while we aim to get back to you as soon as possible.