How Do You Qualify for an Emotional Support Animal?
People with mental health concerns go through draining emotional tussles in their daily lives. Therefore, animals are more than just pets to them. They provide companionship and joy, and emotional support. But, how do you qualify for an emotional support animal?
If you're struggling with a mental illness, an emotional support animal can alleviate the issue. However, you'll need an ESA letter to prove that you need the animal for emotional support and legally possess one. You'll also need an ESA letter to live with your pet in some areas and apartments, or travel with your ESA on American Airlines.
Whether you need comfort or fight loneliness, an emotional support animal plays a crucial role in improving your mental health. Let's look at how you can qualify for an emotional support animal and how DoNotPay can guide you through the application process.
What Is an Emotional Support Animal?
An emotional support animal is an animal companion who has an emotional connection and aids the person in fighting some form of disability. However, a licensed mental health provider should prescribe the animal.
Any pet animal whose presence improves your mental health is what qualifies as an emotional support animal. ESA dogs are the most common emotional support pets, but you can also have a cat. ESA can help:
- Reduce anxiety
- Comfort those who had traumatic experiences
- Improve your physical health
- Ease loneliness
- Give Unconditional love and care
How to Tell if You Need an Emotional Support Animal
You'll need an emotional support animal if your mental or emotional health disability prevents you from doing certain activities. Let's look at what conditions you might have to get an ESA.
|Learning Disabilities||This is when you have difficulty learning or acquiring any skills even though you are not physically disabled.|
|Attention Deficit Disorder||A condition that causes poor concentration or impulsivity.|
|Anxiety Disorders||When distress, worry, and fear interfere with your ability to live your life normally.|
|Severe Depression||Prolonged depression prevents you from living a normal and fulfilling life.|
|Intellectual Disability||When you cannot function intellectually or adapt accordingly due to emotional problems.|
Benefits of Having an Emotional Support Animal
When you get your animal certified as an ESA, you'll enjoy certain privileges. Here are some:
- Live with your pet anywhere. You will have the freedom to take your pet to any place you live, even those with pet restrictions and policies. The fair housing act on emotional support animals allows you to stay with your pet at any home, place, or rental unit.
- Avoid paying pet fees. You can have your landlord waive any pet fees, as the law prevents them from charging you for your emotional support pets.
- Travel with your pet on any airline. With a certified emotional support animal, you can fly with your pet on various airlines. However, you should first confirm with your airline because the rules vary with different airlines. For example, United Airlines emotional support animal guidelines are different from the Southwest emotional support animal requirements.
- Get accepted in public places. In some cases, you'll provide an ESA letter if you need to access public places like a restaurant, supermarket, and many more.
What are the Requirements to Get an Emotional Support Animal?
So, how do you qualify for an emotional support animal? To get an emotional support animal, you must meet the ESA certification requirements. You should keep in mind that people with mental health disabilities are the ones who can get an emotional support animal.
A licensed healthcare professional will give you an ESA letter showing that the support animal gives you therapeutic benefits. The ESA letter should have the following:
- The mental health professional's license type, license number, and issuance state
- The date the letter was issued
- It should be written on the professional's letterhead
- Reasons for an emotional support animal
- Physicians contacts
- The expiry date of the license
To avoid any inconveniences, you should ensure that your ESA letter contains all the required information. You can do this by comparing your letter to a sample ESA letter.
How to Ask for an Emotional Support Animal By Yourself?
If you meet the requirements for an emotional support animal, you can request it by visiting a physician. You can schedule an appointment with your physician and get a signed ESA letter which you can send to your landlord/airline.
With the growth in demand for an ESA letter, getting it is more challenging than you can imagine. That is because people use fraudulent means to live with their animals easily. You'll have to go through the long validation process to confirm that you are a good candidate for an emotional support animal.
However, this doesn't always have to be the case. You can get an emotional support animal letter at the comfort of your home. DoNotPay can get you started on the right path and handle everything for you effortlessly.
How DoNotPay Can Help
Is it hard to get an emotional support animal? No. But it depends on the methods you choose to use. You can get an emotional support animal effortlessly with DoNotPay.
Through our new Service and Emotional Support Animals product, DoNotPay can help you with all of your ESA-related concerns, including contacting your landlord about your ESA, asking airlines about their accommodation options, and finding the most affordable online ESA-letter service.
To resolve any ESA-related issue, we got you covered in 3 easy steps:
- Search "service animal" on DoNotPay.
- Select the type of issue you need help with, including contacting your landlord about your ESA/service animal, asking your airline about ESA options, or requesting ESA/service accommodations at other venues.
- Answer a series of questions about your current situation and the details of your ESA/service animal, so we can generate the best results for you.
And that's it! Depending on your issue, DoNotPay will generate a letter to your landlord and mail it on your behalf, contact the airline agency and get back to you with an answer, or send a letter to your mental health professional requesting an ESA letter.
What Other Pet-Related Products Does DoNotPay Offer?
Pet enthusiasts can take advantage of the many pet-related services offered by DoNotPay. We can help you with:
What Else Can DoNotPay Do?
Whether your problem is pet-related or not, DoNotPay is here to offer you a quick solution. With DoNotPay, you can:
- Get a hotel upgrade on your trip or vacation
- Sue anyone in a small claims court
- Create a Power of Attorney
- Create Passport Photos
We have a hub of services ready for you to use whenever needed!