Guide and Assistance Dog Access Rights

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Yellow labrador puppy in orange jacket

Did you know that under the Dog Act 1976 – SECT 8, Guide and Assistance Dogs are allowed access to everywhere their handler goes – and this includes dogs in training.

It is an offence to refuse entry to a person accompanied by a Guide or Assistance Dog including dogs in training; the only exceptions to this rule are operating theatres and some areas of zoos (such as the walk-through exhibits).

These rights are covered by a variety of legislation including:

The Dog Act (1976), Section 8

The Disability Discrimination Act (1992), Section 8

How To Identify Guide Dogs & Autism Assistance Dogs


Guide and Assistance Dogs and those in training are easy to recognise as they wear different harnesses/jackets: 

Yellow labrador in white leather harness

White Leather Harness – Qualified Guide Dog

A white leather harness, with a rigid handle and reflective front panel indicates that this is a qualified Guide Dog, who is working with their owner. 

Yellow labrador wearing a brown leather harness

Brown Leather Harness – Guide Dog in training

A brown leather harness, with a rigid handle and reflective front panel indicates that this is a Guide Dog in training, who is learning all the skills a Guide Dog needs to safely guide a Western Australian living with low vision.

Yellow labrador in orange Autism Assistance Dog jacketOrange Jacket – Autism Assistance Dog 


An orange canvas jacket with a black foam handle attached by soft straps indicates an Autism Assistance Dog.


They may be in training with a Guide Dogs WA trainer or they may be working with a child and their family.


An Autism Assistance Dog has the same public access rights as a Guide Dog.

Yellow labrador puppy with orange jacketOrange Jacket – Dog or Puppy in training 

An orange fabric jacket indicates a dog or puppy in training. Like a qualified Guide or Autism Assistance Dog, a puppy in training has access rights and can accompany their handler everywhere.  

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