Looking for the best ESA certification services? If so, you’re in the right place, since we did some research and are ready to share our recommendations. We’ll tell you about the top services we’ve found, how you can get an ESA letter, the benefits of it, and more. 

Let’s begin!

Top ESA Service Websites

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Pettable

Editor's Pick

  • Very quick assistance
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee
  • Discounts available for multiple letters

CertaPet

Key Features

  • Free screening test
  • Discounts for multiple letters
  • Outstandingly positive user reviews

ESA Certificate

Most Informative

  • Simple yet informative website
  • Discount for multiple letters
  • Refund if you don’t qualify

ESA Doctors

Key Features

  • Refund if you don't qualify
  • Quick turnaround
  • Efficient support staff

 

Best ESA Certification Services in Detail

Anyone who’s ever had a pet knows how much their companionship and unconditional love can mean. ESAs (aka emotional support animals) have proven to have a wonderful effect on people with anxiety, depression, chronic stress, PTSD, and other mental disabilities. The following services can provide you with a legitimate ESA letter.

Pettable

star 10

Editor's Pick

  • Founded in: 2020
  • Consultations: Email, live chat, phone, & social media
  • Guarantee: 100% money-back guarantee
  • Legal Support: Yes

Pettable is the best ESA website because it primarily values transparency and exceptional service. In addition, this provider works with top mental health experts with lots of experience with ESAs. They are all licensed therapists, professional counselors, or clinical social workers, so you’d certainly be in good hands.

Pettable provides ESA letters for housing and travel purposes. The cost per letter is $149, but you get a discount if you want to receive both. The total cost amounts to $199, which is a great deal. In addition, the company is so confident in the quality of its service that it offers to refund 100% of your payment if your ESA letter doesn’t work as intended.

It’s important to note that the letter contains the therapist’s license number, contact information, and letterhead for housing purposes. This is because the Fair Housing Act requires all landlords to accept compliant letters. Still, should there be any issues in that sense, Pettable is willing to speak with your landlord or travel company to confirm your documents are valid.

Moreover, the letter covering travel is compliant with the Air Carrier Access Act. Unfortunately, as of March 2021, airlines are no longer obligated to accept ESA letters, but some carriers still do, so check with yours before flying.

If you wonder how to get an ESA letter from Pettable, this is their smooth and straightforward process:

  1. Complete a quick questionnaire.
  2. Consult with a therapist.
  3. Receive your ESA letter (potentially within 24 hours).

The first step involves questions like how many pets you’re getting, what kind of an animal you want (an ESA cat, dog, or some other type), if it’s your first time getting an ESA letter, etc. Also, you will likely need to answer several questions related to your mental health. Secondly, you need to fill out specific privacy and consent forms to authorize Pettable’s professionals to work with you. 

Then, you’ll be matched with a licensed therapist in your state and receive a link that will allow you to book a phone consultation with them. If the mental health professional determines you would benefit from an ESA, they’ll write a legally recognized ESA letter for you. 

Anyone who needs it urgently within 24 hours can pay an additional $50. Any period longer than that requires no extra cost. Furthermore, suppose there is any additional emotional support animal paperwork (forms requested by your landlord, airline, school, etc.). In that case, Pettable will fill them out for an additional $30.

We should also note that this provider has the best user reviews we’ve seen, highly praising the therapists and the simplicity of the process. Combined with unrivaled customer support, you can’t go wrong with Pettable.


Pros

  • + Very quick assistance
  • + 100% satisfaction guarantee
  • + Discounts available for multiple letters

Cons

  • You must settle the full price before the consultation

CertaPet

star 9.9

Key Features

  • Founded in: 2015
  • Consultations: Email, live chat, phone, social media
  • Guarantee: Money-back guarantee minus $35 consultation fee
  • Legal Support: Yes

CertaPet is another trustworthy provider of emotional support animal certification, proud to have helped more than 65,000 clients over six years or so. The company’s licensed therapists are highly dedicated and always ready to provide recommendations specific to your situation. They are marriage and family therapists, social workers, professional counselors, and mental health counselors.

As for the pricing, you can get a travel or housing letter for $149. For $199, CertaPet will send you both, which we think is a generous offer. Another great thing is that the company has a money-back guarantee. Your money will be refunded if your application is not approved, except for the $35 consultation fee.

Here’s what the ESA registration process looks like:

  1. Do a free screening test.
  2. Speak to a licensed mental health professional.
  3. Get your ESA letter.

It’s very nice to see that CertaPet offers a screening test free of charge. It only takes around five minutes to take the test and find out if you’re a good ESA letter candidate. A client just needs to state their name, specify whether they already have a pet, and make some observations about their mental health over the past two weeks. The next step is being matched with a licensed therapist in your state and setting up your telehealth appointment.

If it’s determined that your mental health would benefit from an emotional support pet, you will receive a custom treatment plan that includes an ESA letter. You can either print it out by yourself or have it shipped. In addition, there’s a short video on CertaPet’s website explaining how to get an emotional support dog, cat, or some other type of animal if you want to hear more.

In case you’re wondering about the legality of getting an ESA certification online from CertaPet, we assure you there’s nothing to worry about. Their letters are fully compliant with the Air Carrier Access Act and the Fair Housing Act. Unfortunately, the website doesn’t explicitly state how long it takes to receive the letter. Still, most client reviews indicate that it’s a couple of days.

Speaking of customer reviews, CertaPet has an impressive 75,000+ five-star reviews. Most people point out how seriously their issues were taken and how seamless and convenient the service was.


Pros

  • + Free screening test
  • + Discounts for multiple letters
  • + Outstandingly positive user reviews

Cons

  • The money-back guarantee doesn’t cover the consultation fee

ESA Certificate

star 9.9

Most Informative

  • Founded in: 2015
  • Consultations: Email and phone
  • Guarantee: 100% money-back guarantee
  • Legal Support: N/A

ESA Certificate is a company aiming to help people obtain ESA letters as simply as possible while keeping it affordable. They underline how proud they are of having the same rate for five years on the website. You’ll see two options on the Pricing plan page — housing and travel. If you get any of these separately, the price is $149 per letter. However, if you need both, there’s a nice discount, $189.

The staff consists of licensed professionals such as mental health professionals, care physicians, and general physicians. Their main priority is to make sure you feel understood, as they know how intimidating the whole situation might be. In addition, ESA Certificate provides a 100% money-back guarantee if your licensed mental health care professional concludes you don’t qualify. As for cancellations, the fee depends on how much time has passed since placing your order. 

You can check matters like the ones we just mentioned on the FAQ page and lots of other info regarding ESA certification. We really appreciate that this service did its best to cover anything you might be curious about on their website without making the navigation complicated. Moreover, if you obtain a valid letter and your airline/landlord still refuses it, you get a refund. But, of course, that requires proof that it happened at least twice (as the rejection of the initial request is relatively common).

If you opt for this service, this is how the process works:

  1. Fill in the questionnaire.
  2. Make a secure payment.
  3. Connect with a licensed healthcare provider.
  4. Receive a digital copy 1–3 business days after the approval.

The questionnaire is pretty standard, covering some basic information about you and your pet(s). Of course, the response is only shared with your licensed professional. We were surprised to see that the only way to contact ESA Certificate is via phone or email since similar services typically also have social media and/or a live chat option. Our biggest concern is that we couldn’t find user comments on commonly used review sites, but nothing we came across while doing our research raised red flags.


Pros

  • + Simple yet informative website
  • + Discount for multiple letters
  • + Refund if you don’t qualify

Cons

  • Lack of customer feedback online

ESA Doctors

star 9.8

Key Features

  • Founded in: 2015
  • Consultations: Email, social media
  • Guarantee: Full refund if not approved
  • Legal Support: N/A
  • Use ESA2PETPEDIA for $10 OFF!

ESA Doctors is a provider that has been around for quite a few years. They are very passionate about ESA rights and willing to provide information about legitimate emotional support animal registration to prevent anyone from ESA scams. Many users have also emphasized how knowledgeable, compassionate, and supportive their licensed professionals are.

When it comes to pricing, ESA Doctors’ standard fees have not changed in more than five years, as they believe the service should be as accessible as possible. You should also know the delivery is digital.

There are two packages involving ESA letters. Firstly, there’s Emotional Support Animal Housing ($159), which includes assessment by a licensed professional and a signed ESA letter on the provider’s letterhead. Secondly, there’s Emotional Support Animal Plus ($189), which covers everything the previous package does, but it also includes priority support, a PSD add-on for $99, and a discounted yearly renewal rate of $99.

ESA Doctors can also provide services for airlines and landlords that entail extra ESA paperwork for an additional fee clearly disclosed upfront. There is a satisfaction guarantee as well — if the healthcare professional determines that you don’t qualify for an ESA letter, ESA Doctors will return your money so that you can seek help in other ways.

Of course, they always make sure that everything’s in line with the latest ESA rules issued by the Department of Housing and the Department of Transportation.

As for the very process of obtaining an ESA letter online, here are ESA Doctors’ instructions:

  1. Fill out a short online questionnaire.
  2. Make payment via their highly secure payment page.
  3. Get matched with a professional that is licensed for your state.
  4. If you qualify, your ESA documentation will be sent within 1–5 business days.
  5. You will receive the letter within 1–3 business days of getting approved.

The questionnaire includes information like name, email, date of birth, phone number, which animal you’d prefer, and the number of animals. You also need to answer certain questions about the reasons why you need an ESA letter.

Of course, before starting to work with your designated therapist, you’ll need to sign a consent form. However, it isn’t stated on their website how exactly their consultations are conducted (whether it can be done over the phone or in-person, or both).

People who’ve used this service say they are very pleased with the therapists’ willingness to offer valuable advice. Also, they are impressed by how fast they got their letter. We saw a comment about the website failing to save the application form, so the user paid twice the amount of the service cost, but the support team was helpful, and the issue got solved quickly.


Pros

  • + Refund if you don't qualify
  • + Quick turnaround
  • + Efficient support staff

Cons

  • Unclear consultations info

Choosing the Best ESA Certification: Everything You Need to Know

It’s no secret that pets provide the warmest comfort and keep us from being lonely, which is also why therapy dogs are often called “comfort dogs.” In general, ESAs can be crucial for the recovery and well-being of people struggling with mental health.

We prepared this short guide to answer some basic questions and clarify who exactly qualifies for ESAs and who can write an ESA letter. Hopefully, it’ll help you learn how to recognize legitimate services and avoid ESA scams.

How Do You Qualify for an Emotional Support Animal?

According to the American Kennel Club, a pet must be prescribed to someone with a disabling mental illness by a licensed mental health professional to be classified as an ESA. In other words, the pet’s presence is assessed as needed for the patient’s mental health.

How to Get an Emotional Support Animal Prescription?

For many people, getting an ESA letter online is the most affordable and practical way, as you can do it in the comfort of your own home.

Most providers require a simple process whereby you answer a short questionnaire and wait for a licensed therapist to contact you. Then, you usually have consultations over the phone. Finally, they will evaluate whether you meet the requirements for an emotional support dog or another pet.

What Are the Benefits of ESA Letters?

You may not know this, but modern pet therapy dates back to as early as the 1860s. Throughout time, it’s become evident that the advantages of having an ESA are numerous. 

Bustle talked to Jane Reardon, a licensed therapist from LA, who says ESAs help produce neurotransmitters, calm anxiety on airplanes, work well in combination with other treatment methods, help regulate everyday feelings, provide social support, and so much more.

With all that in mind, it’s no wonder that nearly 85% of pet owners consider their pets to be a source of unconditional love.

In addition, a study shows that ESAs even help with serious mental illnesses, anxiety, and/or depression symptoms.

How to Register an Emotional Support Animal

There is no official registration database for ESAs. However, getting a legitimate and clear ESA letter means no landlord can discriminate against you for having a pet providing emotional support. On the other hand, Airlines are no longer legally obligated to accept this letter. However, many still do, so be sure to check that info before traveling.

How to Avoid Online ESA Letter Scams

There are several red flags to have in mind when looking for a company offering to provide an ESA letter. First, instant approvals are practically impossible since an actual mental health professional needs to have a thorough conversation with you to evaluate your need for an ESA. 

Some companies can speed up the entire thing if you pay extra, but make sure they don’t skip any part of the official, detailed process stated on their website. Moreover, although we all like good deals, low-cost letters are usually a sign that it’s a scam. Another warning sign is an offer to register your ESA. We already mentioned there is no official ESA register!

Finally, don’t forget to check what other clients think about the company. Nowadays, it’s super easy to leave user feedback online and search for them. A simple google search can tell you a lot about the legitimacy of any service provider.

FAQ

What is an ESA dog?

An emotional support dog is prescribed by a licensed mental health professional since the pet is required for the owner’s mental well-being. The dogs can be of any age and any breed. It can also be a dog you already own.

(American Kennel Club)

Are emotional support animals service animals?

No, service animals are individually trained to perform tasks for persons with disabilities or work. Therefore, pets whose primary purpose is to provide emotional support don’t qualify as service animals under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

(ADA.gov)

Can emotional support animals go anywhere?

Not exactly. Your ESA can be in a no-pets building or a university dorm because of its special status. Still, airlines, hotels, Airbnb stays, restaurants, stores, other businesses, etc., are not legally required to allow it.

(ESA Doctors)

Can I register a cat as an emotional support animal?

As we pointed out, there’s no official ESA register, but you can definitely get an ESA letter for a cat.

How Do I Get an Emotional Support Animal Letter Online?

You need to choose a service provider and follow the instructions on their website. In most cases, you will be asked some basic questions about yourself and your mental state. Then, you will speak to a licensed therapist who will decide if you’re eligible for an ESA letter.

If you meet the criteria, you can expect the letter soon after.

Bottom Line

Having an ESA letter is vital if your pet plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy mental state and avoiding an emotional crisis.

You can’t go wrong with any of the best ESA certification services we recommended in our list, since we’ve confirmed they are trustworthy and professional.

Sources:

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