Definition of a Service Dog
As service dog is a dog specifically training to provide assistance to a disabled individual. Service dogs may provide a variety of services to a disabled individual, including leading a blind person, pulling a wheelchair, guarding patient in case of medical emergency, provide seizure alert and many other things. Many people confuse therapy or companion dogs with service dogs, but they are not the same. A service dog is trained to provide some sort of service for a disabled individual and must be allowed in any public place where the person is allowed, according to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Even if the establishment is one that does not allow pets, the service dog must be allowed entry. It\'s important to remember that a service dog is not a pet.
What Type of Identification is Required for a Service Dog?
There are currently no service dog identification requirements, according to the U.S. Department of Justice. While some owners buy vests or collars that designate the dog as a service dog, it\'s more for their convenience than anything else. Often when a business sees that a dog is wearing a service dog vest or collar, they don\'t typically question the dog\'s owner.
Some owners choose to train their own service dog while others have the dog professionally trained. The advantage of having a service dog professionally trained is that the dog receives documentation that the animal is a trained service dog. In many places, identification papers make it easier and more convenient for the disabled individual. While the federal government or the ADA does not require service dog identification, the requirements might vary from state to state. Each state has specific laws regarding what is and isn\'t allowed. It is important to remember that federal law trumps state law every time.
Can a Service Dog Enter a Business Place Without Identification?
As stated above, service dogs must be allowed entry into any place where a person would be allowed, whether it\'s a restaurant, hotel, department store or move theater. Failure to follow this law can result in a large fine by the U.S. Department of Justice. Many places who have failed to obey this law have not only been fined but have also been ordered to complete training and provide training to employees on service dogs and the Americans with Disabilities Act. When an individual enters a place of business and states their dog is a service dog, the business owner can ask if the dog is required due to a disability and what service the dog provides. These are the only questions they can ask regarding the dog. They can NOT ask to see any documentation or may be subject to a fine. For more information visit http://www.servicedogsamerica.org/
About the Author
Author: Service Dogs America
Weston Barnes is a write and an avid reader. When he\'s not writing about business, marketing, health, pets, or relationships, he\'s immersed in his latest book. When Weston was little, he would have to sneak a book light into his room so he could read until the wee hours of the night.
Photo Credits: smerikal/Flickr
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