Can a Duck Be a Service Animal? (Answered)

can a duck be a service animal

Animals are living creatures that can eat, move, reproduce, and react (through their senses).

They are sensible but are lower creatures than human beings.

They can either be pets, helpers, threats, or predators to humans.

In some parts of the world, some animals like cats, dogs, wolves, and birds can serve as assistance animals.

There are different ways in which animals can be of help to humans and they can be categorized according to the functions that they perform.

Table of Contents

Categories of Animals

These categories in regards to their function include.

  • Service or working animals
  • Guide animals
  • Therapy assist animals
  • Emotional support animals
  • Mobility animals
  • Psychiatric assist animals
  • Hearing animals
  • Autism animals
  • Medical emergency animals

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What Are Service Animals?

Service animals are animals that have been trained to work and assist disabled people.

They are also known as assistance, helper, or assist animals, depending on the functions they perform and the country.

Service animals include service/trained dogs (e.g. seizure sensing dogs for epileptic patients), miniature horses, capuchin monkeys, and helper monkeys.

Once these animals receive training, they can help disabled people to perform some functions that they cannot perform due to their disabilities.

These functions include, but are not limited to:

  • Extra security and companionship
  • Opening doors and barriers
  • Guiding the disabled through a crowd (especially uncontrollable ones)
  • Helping the disabled cross the road
  • Guiding the blind on the road
  • Making the disabled aware of sounds and other alerts
  • Understanding traffic commands and signals – this is particularly shocking!

Disabilities That Require Service Animals

  • Most physical disabilities like spinal cord injuries that leave one confined to a wheelchair
  • Visual impairment
  • Hearing impairment
  • Mental disabilities like bipolar disorders
  • Epilepsy
  • Autism

What to Know About Ducks

duck as a service animal

A duck is a flightless waterfowl amongst the Anatidae bird family. It has numerous species that amount to over 134.

They include the following.  

  • Domestic duck
  • Mallard
  • Marbled duck
  • Canvasback
  • Fulvous whistling duck
  • Alabio duck
  • Black-bellied whistling duck
  • Wandering whistling duck
  • Spotted whistling duck
  • White-faced whistling duck
  • Lesser whistling duck
  • Plumed whistling duck

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Features of a Duck

A duck is small and short-necked (smaller and shorter than a swan and geese). It has waterproof feathers and long, broad beaks.

Ducks have webbed feet that they use in swimming. The feet can become wider.

They are mostly found in woodlands, lakes, rivers, and wetlands.

The males have more colorful feathers than the females.

Ducks can turn their head backward to clean their feathers.

They can sleep while floating on water and they can sleep with one eye open to protect themselves against predators.

They eat healthy grains, fresh veggies and fruits, edible flowers, herbs, greens and weeds, scrambled eggs, mealworms, and algae.

Their feet are kept warm, when the weather is cold, through their unique blood vessel system.

The lifespan of a duck is 5-10 years.

Can a Duck Be a Service Animals?

can ducks be a service animal

Ducks cannot be service animals. They’re not capable of being service animals to disabled individuals because they cannot perform the functions of a service animal.

For example, a duck cannot help a disabled person cross the road or open the door.

In addition, it needs to be taken care of and not the other way around. So, it cannot fulfill the work duties assigned to it.

It might end up becoming an added burden to the disabled instead of relieving their burden.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) states that only dogs should be used as service animals.

Other animals like miniature horses, which are also accepted as service animals in some states are trainable to work for humans.

However, a duck cannot be trained as a service animal but can perform well as a pet, a therapy animal, or an emotional support animal.

Related: Can Deaf People Scream? (Answered)

A Duck as a Pet

A duck is a great and exquisite pet and companion.

Its maintenance may be a little bit on the high side but it is relatively better than a chicken when it comes to reproduction and lifespan.

Ducks that are properly taken care of can live as long as 10-15 years. They produce lots of manure, hence, they can function as good garden pets.

They also consume pests and insects, so you need not worry about the services of an exterminator.

Additionally, they cause little or no damage to your yard, unlike chickens.

Requirements to Adopt a Duck as a Pet

To adopt a duck, you have to be ready to take care of it.

The following are essentials needed to raise a duck or ducklings.

General Maintenance

Ducks need a swimming tub and a constant change of water.

Because they mostly live in ponds and wetlands, you need to consider getting a moderate-sized tub that you can easily clean and maintain.

They tend to get their water messy easily, hence, you need to be ready to provide adequate and regular replacements.

Food and Treats

As mentioned earlier, ducks are quite exquisite pets, so you have to be ready to give them some treats.

Apart from that, it is not easy to get exclusive waterfowl food around, except you have it ordered.

Alternatively, you can feed them fresh carrots and vegetables, ripe tomatoes, pumpkins, brussels sprouts, berries, bananas, and corn.


Ducks need enclosed and wide spaces (not necessarily tall because they are short) to protect them from predators like hawks that can easily pick them up.

During winter, be ready to accommodate them indoors (like the garage) to protect them from extreme cold – seeing they have been taken out of their natural habitats.

A Duck as a Therapy Assist Animal

Ducks can be trained to assist disabled individuals that require therapy after a disability occurs.

These individuals might require psychological or physiological assistance after going through a trauma that has left them disabled.

Ducks can be trained to provide comfort to people and behave properly around them.

Once this is achieved, they can be certified as therapy animals before receiving the authorization to enter nursing, therapy, and care homes.

This is because of allergies and noise. Although, not all ducks make the quacking sound.

A Duck as an Emotional Support Animal

Just like a duck needs certification to become a therapy animal, so does it need to be certified (by a healthcare professional) to become an emotional support animal, even though it requires no training.

Ducks are sure to provide comfort, neck hugs, cuddles, pecks, and swims to their owner.

They can form an attachment with humans such that they prefer the human company to the company of other ducklings.

Can a Duck Be a Service Animal? (Answered)


My love for the disabled community started when I helped a blind man cross the road at around age 6. Fast forward to decades later, I became the caregiver of my grandma, who lost her ability to speak in her 90s. This blog helps me to produce helpful content that aligns with my passion.

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