Fake service dogs

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by Shakou, Feb 20, 2013.

  1. CharlieDog

    CharlieDog Rude and Not Ginger

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    I am annoyed by the badges because I get asked for one. And then get to play 20 questions when I say those aren't required.

    I didn't come to Target/the grocery store/wherever to provide full legal discourse on who's allowed to have a SD. I came to shop/eat/get business done.
     
  2. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    You can get patches elsewhere, and they're just as effective, if not more effective, than the "certified' or "registered" IDs. You can even get disability-specific ones if that's your style (I have autism ones because I got a lot of questions about what he's for before I got them).

    I find people flashing IDs/badges and making it harder for the dogs that come after them (without ID) offensive and counterproductive. Also, if you REALLY want a badge, it's simple enough to make one yourself. No need to support scammy businesses.
     
  3. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    Which I'd venture is why people get patches. Sucks tho, I feel ya.
     
  4. Red Chrome

    Red Chrome New Member

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    I agree. I also get asked for one. I do have one for my dog because in the area I live in, it makes it easier for us.

    I feel it is a personal preference that every SD handler should be able to make on their own, without worry about being called, "fake".

    *My dog does have a little id badge but he does not wear it. I do however keep it and these nifty little ADA law cards in my purse. It is easier to explain to people with the little ADA law cards. He does wear a vest in public that does have patches on it, but that is all he wears, none of the collar tags etc.*
     
  5. CharlieDog

    CharlieDog Rude and Not Ginger

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    Oh, I use patches and a vest that clearly label the dog as working. I don't mind having the vest on the dog at all. That's not a big deal to me, and I don't know many people that think it is.

    I just mind getting asked for my SD's ID and certification badge because "the SD that came before had one".

    It's irritating. I don't mind answering questions most of the time either, unless I've got other things going on, or CAN'T answer most questions at the time they're being asked.
     
  6. CharlieDog

    CharlieDog Rude and Not Ginger

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    I think it's a matter of preference, but what the issue is, is when businesses start to think it's legally required.

    I carry very little gear for myself and my dog anywhere. I cannot be arsed to carry law cards, an ID badge, anything besides basic necessities.
     
  7. Red Chrome

    Red Chrome New Member

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    I do think that is a valid issue and businesses need to keep up on the laws better than they do.

    I understand that. I just happen to like huge purses. LOL
     
  8. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

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    I guess this is what confused me. You're saying here some states have certification/ID options for handlers, and that implies USA (unless you meant Mexico?). Do you know what states they are? Because I haven't heard of any offering anything like that. None of them require it.

    The only thing I can think of that comes close is the city of Seattle has a disability registry for people with disabilities, not just SD handlers, that allows them to get deals on utilities, food assistance, etc. They have an option to register your SD with the city so that you can get a discounted license tag, but that's the only thing they offer. It's the same license every other dog gets.

    How do SD handlers from places that don't require certification deal with traveling to a place that does? It never occurred to me before.
     
  9. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    I think it depends on where you're coming from and where you're going. I did a bit of research to see what it would take to use Logan if I ever went to the UK, and pretty much since he's OT I'd be out of luck unless I could find an ADI program willing to certify him (highly unlikely, since most programs only certify their own dogs). Taking an SD from the UK and using it here, though, would be no issue at all.
     
  10. JessLough

    JessLough Love My Mutt

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    Ohh, no, it was just 2 different statements so I put space between them. Mostly so I could see that I mentioned both parts.

    I'm not sure exactly *which* states, but I am fairly certain it's been mentioned previously that North Carolina does, and I believe Ohio and NY do. At least, that's what it looked like looking through the laws quickly to double check that I wasn't just making things up.


    I'm not sure what they do exactly. I know one person went, and just never happened to be asked so it wasn't an issue -- but they didn't go into restaurant or anything as they were with family. Another person I know of coming into Canada from the US just planned to not go anywhere alone. I believe an option they looked into was getting a doctor's note stating they needed the dog, why they needed the dog and what the dog does.

    I'm not sure, honestly, what would happen had they been stopped and asked while in the store, though probably would have just been asked to leave. I'm not even sure what's all necessary to bring a SD from Canada in around here, though, other than knowing that they can ask many more questions and ask you to leave a lot easier.
     
  11. OwnedByBCs

    OwnedByBCs Will Creep For Sheep

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    I really only have experience with Search and Rescue dogs, which do get a few special privileges (they can fly in cabin on planes for SAR specific travel, and they can go into *some* establishments while on deployment) but we are required to have vests and I.D. badges for both the handler and the dog. Its not really a big deal to me, but then again we don't "depend" on our dogs for day-to-day activities so its very different.

    Anyways, sometimes I wish that service dogs did have vests, so they are easily identifiable. There was a Berner at Costco the other day, and honestly I didn't realize it was a service dog for a long time and almost considered alerting an employee. I thought he might be lost, he was offleash and very poorly groomed, but he was also extremely well behaved. I realized he was a SD because he was closely following a paralyzed woman in a wheelchair and her friend/caregiver. So yes, it was great that he was so behaved, but he was also rather dirty, drooling (yeah its a berner and it was warm, honestly that didn't bother me much but probably would bother others, considering that costco sells food), he was off leash and he had no vest.

    So, my opinion on the topics brought up in this post: Training is obviously incredibly important, and obviously service dogs and non service dogs when allowed in a public place need to be held to a high standard.

    Aside from training though, I think its kind of messed up for someone to pretend to have a service dog just so they can take their dog places. One, why do you need to take your dog everywhere? I *adore* my dogs, but I don't feel the need to take them grocery shopping. Two, I completely agree with the handicap parking spot comparison, I think it is exactly the same. With that said, people do stupid stuff that I hate all the time and I usually just ignore it and move on. LOL
     
  12. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    That's enough to get the dog kicked out. They must be reasonable clean (sometimes you can't avoid some things, but you have to at least try), and they MUST be on leash unless they're actively performing a task that requires them to be off leash, for example going more than a few feet to retrieve something or open a door.
     
  13. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

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    It's really not like using handicapped parking spaces, because there aren't a finite number of service dog spaces. That's like... I have a coworker who is an amputee. Because of that, he has a handicapped parking pass. Some of us from work wanted to go to the sportsman's show, and since parking is awful there, we all met at a nearby parking lot, piled into his car, and drove off to park in the handicapped space. And yeah, looked like a bunch of able-bodied people using a handicapped space, because when he's wearing long pants, you can't tell that he has a prosthesis.

    Anyway, the fact that the rest of us were taking advantage of the opportunity to be in a close in parking space despite not being disabled ourselves does not affect other handicapped people one bit. There were still just as many handicapped spaces available.

    Similarly, if someone is claiming a service dog that isn't, as long as the dog is well behaved, it has no impact on disabled people and their SDs. They still have just as much access. I used to think it was a big deal, now I take the more relaxed attitude that it doesn't impact anyone as long as the dog is well behaved, so who cares?

    And I can think of a lot of reasons to want to take your dog places where dogs aren't allowed. One I remember from some years back was when we had an agility trial at the state fair. Dogs not allowed on the rest of the fairgrounds. One woman I know put her dogs "therapy dog" vest on, because it looks enough like a "service dog" vest for him to pass, so she could take her dog with her to browse around the fair. Why not? What does it hurt? And why not get a chance to see the fair, as long as we're there, without having to abandon your dog in a crate all day? I was a bit jealous, truth told, I didn't have anything like that. Plus, my dogs were not so well trained, or small enough for me to carry.
     
  14. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

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    It is though, because:

    1. Both are ILLEGAL. It's a felony to impersonate someone with a disability, and that includes using a fake SD. Most states have their own laws against it as well. There are hefty fines and jail time if you're caught far above and beyond using a handicap parking space without a permit.

    2. Most dogs that are pets masquerading as SDs, are not trained to public access standard. Their misbehavior affects the ability of legitimate teams to get access. So while they aren't taking up a "SD slot", they contribute to restricting the mobility of people who are actually disabled.

    I can't find the federal wording right now, but here's Alaska's just 'cause it's handy:

    http://www.legis.state.ak.us/basis/folioproxy.asp?url=http://wwwjnu01.legis.state.ak.us/cgi-bin/folioisa.dll/stattx06/query=[jump!3A!27as1181900!27]/doc/{t4344}/pageite
     
  15. sassafras

    sassafras mushinois

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    It doesn't really "hurt" anyone* but I do think it's a childish and selfish thing to do. What does it hurt her to follow the rules and come back to the fair another day? Did she need to browse around the fair with her dog?


    *Immediately and directly, anyway. Whether it indirectly hurts SD handlers as a whole is another discussion I'm on the fence about.
     
  16. RBark

    RBark Got Floof?

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    I should note that the state of CA does have an optional certification program for service dogs. To get it, you need to present proof of training (i.e. a CGC).

    They also have, again an optional, certification that gives SDIT's the same rights as SD's.

    So it's there. I am of the mind that certification should not be there, but I saw it commented on earlier so I figured I'd bring it up.
     
  17. frostfell

    frostfell Kung Pow Fish

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    I SAID "seemingly misbehaving". a dog barking and dragging their owner might be alerting that their handler is having a panic attack and to GTFO THE WAY AND LET ME GET HER OUTSIDE. You dont know. And its not up to you even if you did know. And thats not posing a danger to anyone, unless of course someone is stupid enough to interfere with a SD and grab the leash and stop them and be like blahblahblahblah while the poor handler is having a seizure or stroke or panic attack or what-have-you.
     
  18. ~Jessie~

    ~Jessie~ Chihuahua Power!

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    This pretty much sums it up for me.

    I've seen some badly misbehaving "service dogs" before. One time, when I was grocery shopping, there was a lab causing a scene. The owner/handler kept leash popping it while it was trying to dart out the door.

    I think misbehaved dogs give a worse name to service dogs than well behaved fakers.
     
  19. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

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    I'm not arguing the illegality, but that's up to a person's discretion whether that matters to them or not. The question of whether I condemn a behavior comes down to "does it hurt anyone", and I don't think a well-behaved dog masquerading as a SD does.

    Note, again, that I stipulate well behaved. Not for people to bring poorly trained dogs everywhere they go. But if the behavior of the dog is such that it brings credit to SDs, where is the harm?
     
  20. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

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    Well, if you want to tell an arthritic retired gym teacher that it's "childish and selfish" for her to enjoy a little of her downtime at an agility trial by seeing the sights at the fair (with a dog that's trained well enough to be a therapy dog, as well as a UD), rather than twiddle her thumbs all day, then drive an hour each way on another day so she can see the fair, have at 'er. I'm not doing it.
     

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