Service Dogs-in-Training Attend a Performance of “Billy Elliott” and Pay Adorable, Rapt Attention


Did you know that service dogs go through official good citizen training – the and training that allows them to best assist specific disabilities – but that they also typically spend time with foster families so they can learn how to behave in everyday social situations?

It’s true.

One of those everyday situations might be going to the theater – live, musical, or movie – with their trainer, so that if the person they’re paired with wants to take in a show of any kind, they’ll know exactly what to expect and how to behave.


And that’s how we got this theater full of pups, all quietly, cutely watching Billy Elliott.

The dogs are part of the K-9 Country Inn Service Dog program in Canada, and they were all very good dogs – every one observed proper theater behavior.

The pups attended a “relaxed performance” at the Stratford Festival theater, which means it’s a showing specifically for people who need more accessibility, accommodations, or reduced noise, lighting, or startling effects.

According to the Stratford  Festival website:

Relaxed performances are specifically designed to welcome patrons who will benefit from a less restricted audience environment. Patrons of all abilities are welcome, including but not limited to those with intellectual or learning disabilities, sensory processing conditions or autism. There is a relaxed attitude to noise and movement within the auditorium, and some minor production changes may be made to reduce the intensity of light, sound and other potentially startling effects. Babes in arms are also welcome to our relaxed performances.”


What a great combination of events, all of which prove there are good humans (and pooches) out there with making the world accessible for everyone on their minds.


And, just for fun, Mark Hamill wins for best response on Twitter.

The force is definitely with him, and may it be with these pooches when they go on to take their permanent assignments!