What Happens To Service Dogs When The Owner Dies? [5 Facts]

What Happens To Service Dogs When The Owner Dies

Hey there, friend! Have you ever wondered what happens to service dogs when their owners pass away? It’s a common question, and I’m here to help you understand the facts.

First things first, let’s clear up a common misconception. Service dogs have just as many feelings as any other dog – in fact, this issue affects them more than anyone else. Losing their owner can be a traumatic experience, but there are several ways to ensure that they are taken care of properly.

So, what happens when the owner of a service dog passes away? Well, there are several options. The dog can be kept with a new owner after a specific legal process, the organization that trained the dog can take it back, the service dog can retire and join a new family, or they can be re-trained for new duties and help people who need support – especially those with disabilities.

You can rest assured that service dogs will not be left to live a pathetic life after their owner’s passing. There are several options available to ensure that they are taken care of and continue to provide support to those in need.

If you’re curious to learn more about this topic, then follow my lead. In this article, we’ll dive deeper into what happens to service dogs when their owners pass away and provide you with some helpful tips and tricks on how to ensure that your furry friend is taken care of properly. So, let’s get started!

What is the fate of service dogs after the owner dies?

Normally a service dog is trained by an organization or under the control of an owner. And there are many kinds of service dogs such as military dogs, therapy dogs, police dogs, etc.

All of them provide marvelous service for humans. Should we admire them? Seriously, Have you ever thought about the fate of service dogs after the owner died?

If the answer is NO, now you are gonna get it. If the answer is YES, you will be able to find more details. Keep reading this article for more delicious things.

What can you do to service dogs after his/her owner dies? Here I’m gonna explain 5 solutions.

Suggested Reading: Here is why do the police and military reject Dobermans.

1. keep the dog with a new owner

This fact depends on the dog’s age. If the dog is trained by an owner, you can give them to a person who is willing to get the service from the dogs.

If the dog is young and capable enough, these things will be straightforward. It’s a well-known fact that the dog might not be capable enough, both mentally and physically.

But you have to bear up if you really wanna this dog.

2. The organisation can take back the dog

As I have mentioned earlier, service dogs can grow under an organization and an owner. Here we talk about when a dog trains under an organization.

If this dog is a police or military one, you can hand over the dog to another person who works under the organization and continue the mission.

What they can do is let someone else work with the dog with the same mission. That will not be very easy because the dog has got used to working with the previous owner.

Nevertheless, the dog can be loyal to the new owner too.

By the way, here are 7 interesting things to know about police dogs.

3. The dog can give to a new family and get retire

If the dog is old and wanna stay free, we can give it to a good family. Make sure they are patient and calm. Because an old dog needs love, care, affection, and a healthy atmosphere.

Because he/she is already in pain because of his/her master’s death. The dog will be able to spend his/her rest of the life very peacefully with a new family after long-term service.

They might be not very physically and mentally capable, but I’m sure they can still be sweet to the new family.

4. Retrain

If the dog is young and eligible enough for more services, we can retrain for a new mission. Most of the service dogs are performed well; therefore, they can train easily.

Therapy dogs can go to hospitals, convalescent centers and provide their service after the retraining. They are always very social with everyone.

Military and police dogs have the power even after their owner dies. Therefore they can send the dog back to the mission with a new owner after a few days of the death of his/her master.

They are fond of doing their mission, and they have enough strength to carry on.

5. Rehome

If the service dog is raised under an owner, we can rehome the dog and send him/her back to a person who needs help, such as disabled, a heart patient, cancer, or people with high blood pressure.

It will take a little time to recover after the death of his/her owner.

But they can be loyal even after their master dies. Therapy dogs are really sensitive and patient with everyone. They do their job very well and ignore their pain.

Not only that, but also they can take care of the babies. If you have an idea to get a therapy dog, it will be the best choice for your baby, a disabled child.

By the way, here is why do service dogs look sad.

Can another person adopt a service dog after the death of its owner?

What do you think about that? First, do you wanna adopt a service dog after the death of its owner? This question depends on you.

It depends on your interest. If you wanna a direct answer, I say YES. Yes, another person can adopt a service dog after the death of its owner.

Like I said before, service dogs are very loyal even after his/her owner dies.

Because they are well-trained and dedicated to doing their job during any condition. They get used to doing their duties on time.

That means they have responsibilities to fulfill. They have an aim for their life. So anyone can adopt a service dog after the death of its owner without any doubt.

Rarely some incidents can happen. Because service dogs attach to the owner amazingly. But they never hurt you if you treat them like a child.

Do service dogs grieve over the death of their owner?

Like I said before, they are also as normal as other dogs. So YES, service dogs grieve over the death of their owner. Honestly, there is a risk of the dog dying too.

Unfortunately, these kinda things are happening. Sometimes the pain of them doesn’t display, and there are no signs to notice. But inside, they are burning.

Who can bear a situation like that? The owner means a lot to them.

  1. They refuse to take foods
  2. Refuse to play
  3. Less sleep or sleep a long time
  4. Lose weight loss
  5. They might be suffering from fever

Those are a few signs when a dog grieves over the death of its owner.

Being patient, giving more love, kindness, attention, affection, meeting the vet, trying to catch their unusual behaviors can help the dogs get rid of their pain.

Things to be aware of.

1. Respect them

Although their owners have already died, dogs’ abilities can never be buried under the ground. So keep respecting them as you did before.

They have their own pride, and that’s why they exist. A service dog cannot live without a master, but it can survive from anything and protect you from everything.

They have done a good job, and there is more to do. So respect them without any hesitation.

2. Don’t get rid of the dog

Some people think that when the service dog’s owner dies, they cannot handle anyone. And they try to get rid of the dog and stay without any responsibility.

You cannot do that. Although the dog loses his/her master, they deserve to have a good life. Therefore do not even think of getting rid of that valuable dog.

The people who know the value of a service dog never leave them.  Service dogs are like a miracle. Try to protect them.

3. Treat them as a part of a family

Dogs are part of our family. But I mean, here is when you get a service dog after his/her owner dies, they need more attention, love, and affection than other dogs until they become normal.

Missing the master is not an easy thing for a loyal dog. There are some occasions that even dogs died after their master’s death. So you are gonna face a huge challenge.

Try to make a good companionship with the dog. You can go on dog walks, picnics, and also play with the dog until they feel comfortable with you.

4. Try to do some extra activities

Service dogs are also the same as normal dogs. They feel sad, happy, and bored too. After their owner’s death, they can fall from their both mental and physical capabilities.

To break the monotony, you can arrange extra activities for that poor dog, such as doggy camp, doggy competition, dog walks, etc.

Because of those things, they can set their minds up, at least a little time. In time to come, dogs will understand the reality, and they will get used to adapting to the situation.

5. Let them continue their job

Although their owners have died, they have more things to continue. Feeling sympathy is good, but don’t keep the dogs out from their work.

Because service dogs depend on their duties. If the dog is a therapy dog, let him/her visit hospitals, convalesce centers as they did before.

Because of it, they might feel happy.

6. Don’t let them be alone

Normally when dogs feel sad, they try to stay away from everyone. They might reject the food, water, shelter, etc.

Because of that, they will get sick. That can affect their health very effectively. What you have to do is try to keep the dog with you or around people or else with his/her gang.

7. Try to console

Dogs can understand anything very easily. They feel sad, sympathy, anger, loneliness as well. They know the people who treat them and the way that people treat them.

This is an excellent chance to take the dog under your control. Try to console the dog and also let them feel how much you care about them.

Try to stay with that poor dog as long as you are able. That is not a cunning thing, and don’t think you are selfish and try to get benefits using this chance.

This is for the dog’s welfare. You have to sacrifice everything to make the poor dog’s mind.


What would you suppose to do after the death of a service dog’s owner? And then what happened to that innocent soul? Is it to stay alone entire his/her life or get rid of him/her? These questions might be running around your head. Here what I have done is answer all of your doubts at once and very clearly. Under this circumstance, I have mentioned what you can do and how to tackle the condition like that. So I hope that you will get these valuable instructions and go ahead.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *