Guide Dog Benefit
This section is an excerpt from the Ontario Works Act, 1997 prescribed by the Province of Ontario.
55.(1) The following benefits shall be paid with respect to each of the members of a recipient’s benefit unit if the administrator is satisfied that he or she meets the criteria for them and income assistance is being paid on his or her behalf:
5. If a member of the benefit unit has a guide dog, an amount not exceeding $80 for the care of the guide dog.
The guide dog benefit is a mandatory Ontario Works (OW) benefit that is provided to assist with the costs for the routine care and feeding of the dog. The benefit is available to any client, spouse or dependant who, due to a disability, has a specially trained dog certified for use as a guide, hearing or service dog by an accredited training facility.
To be eligible for the benefit, verification that the dog has been trained and certified by an accredited training facility for use as a guide, hearing or service dog is required.
Verification can be in the form of a certificate from the accredited training facility or a registration card from the Ministry of the Attorney General.
An “accredited training facility” is:
- For guide dogs, a facility that is listed in the Blind Persons’ Rights Act, a facility that is a member and meets the minimum standards of Assistance Dogs International or a facility that is a member and meets the minimum standards of the International Guide Dog Federation.
- For hearing and service dogs, a facility that is a member and meets the minimum standards of Assistance Dogs International.
The caseworker is to ensure that the guide, hearing or service dog is still with the client, spouse or dependant before issuing the benefit.
- A copy of the dog’s certification should be kept on file.
- No receipts with respect to the care provided to the dog are required
- $80.00 a month per dog per Benefit Member may be issued for 12 months with a review every 12 months.
Read a summary of coverage for guide dogs and how to apply
Guide Dog Training Schools under the Blind Persons’ Rights Act Canada
P.O. Box 280, Rideau Valley Dr. N., Manotick, Ontario, K4M 1A3
P.O. Box 907, Oakville, Ontario, L6J 5E8