The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is a nonprofit organization founded in 1912. It’s dedicated to promoting ethical business practices and trust between consumers and the enterprises with which they do business.
As explained on the BBB website, it seeks to achieve these goals primarily by:
- Setting standards for marketplace trust
- Encouraging and supporting best practices by engaging with and educating consumers and businesses
- Celebrating marketplace role models
- Calling out and addressing substandard marketplace behavior
- Creating a community of trustworthy businesses and charities
The BBB is comprised of more than 100 independently incorporated local chapters. The organization accredits around 400,000 local businesses and nonprofits throughout the United States and Canada. Read all about its accreditation standards here on the BBB website. Also, the BBB collects and makes public user reviews and complaints about local businesses.
For those looking to acquire a hearing, guide, or service dog, the process begins with selecting an assistance dog program or other provider. It’s essential to perform due diligence in researching potential providers to find a reputable one that can be relied on to properly train and match their dogs and deliver all the necessary support to people undertaking partnership.
Searching for assistance dog providers under consideration on the BBB website is an important part of the investigation. This can be done by entering the provider’s name and location in the search tool on the site.
Also—as a side note—only pursue partnership through a provider accredited by Assistance Dog International or the International Guide Dog Federation. Searching through these organizations is a smart way to create a shortlist of potential assistance dog providers.
Not all assistance dog providers are accredited or listed by the BBB; not having a listing is not necessarily cause for concern. Give careful consideration to the listings you do find, but also look to other sources of information for listed and unlisted providers.
As another side note, the BBB website is also a good place to turn when trying to pick a veterinarian or groomer for your assistance dog.