Advocate for service dogs and those who use service dogs in order to live a more independent life by informing others about the harm that can come from having a fake service dog in public.
In order to advocate for service dogs, it is important to become familiar with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA). The current ADA requirements can be found here: https://www.ada.gov/service_animals_2010.htm
Please remember that disabilities are not always visible and trained service dogs can be any breed or size.
Per the ADA, staff may only ask two questions:
(1) Is the dog a service animal required because of a disability?
(2) What work or task has the dog been trained to perform?
Staff cannot ask about the person’s disability, require medical documentation, require a special identification card or training documentation for the dog, or ask that the dog demonstrate its ability to perform the work or task. Many people with disabilities who use service dogs have faced increased discrimination from business owners and other patrons, due to prior bad experiences with fraudulent service dogs.
A person with a disability cannot be asked to remove their service animal from the premises unless:
(1) The dog is out of control and the handler does not take effective action to control it
(2) The dog is not housebroken
Dogs whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the ADA and do not have public access rights. While posing a pet as a service dog is against federal law, we do not recommend approaching a stranger with a potentially fraudulent service dog.
Learn more about our service dogs here.