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Monday, September 20, 2010

A Serivce Animal? Really?

So, I tried to post something similar on Erin and Pompei's blog, but my computer was being stupid. So, since there is such controversy I thought I would start a little post myself.

Fitting for my 200th post no?

The Chiuaua that I saw in Ikea might very well have been a real service dog. I think he/she was actually because the thing was soooo well mannered and was very clean.

The dog that attacked Royalty in the mall was by no means a service animal. Here's why. He/she was pushed in a dog stroller (I'm ok with the lap, bag/purse, grocery cart thing, but not dog stroller), it was unleashed, had no jacket/harness whatsoever distinguishing as a service animal, and...well, it legitimately attacked Royalty.

Here are my standards for a Service animal. Well mannered and clean. That's all. I could care less if the dog is pretending to be a service animal as long as it is well mannered and clean.

What about if their owner is training them themselves? Well, then I believe it is the owner's responsibility to put somewhere "IN TRAINING" so that there is an explained reason for naughty behavior.

I am quite aware that some dogs from legit training schools go away with some dog aggression, but the clients and the puppy raisers are told to keep the dog on a leash at all times. If the person does not have enough sense to put a leash on their dog while they are "training" it, then I do not personally believe that person is responsible enough for a service animal. And I believe here at GDB if one of our Graduates starts showing signs of dog aggression they are retired immediately if the problem persists for more than two months or so.

Messes in stores. Look, we all raise puppies and have been there and done that a thousand times over. But we CLEAN up after our pups. The people who I see with "service" animals that relieve in a store who just look down and walk on (yes I've seen it before) are not responsible enough to have the service animal even if they are training them themselves. And yes, I think I am allowed to make that judgement when I see that sort of thing happen. I don't think people who don't clean up after their pets are responsible enough for the pet and their pet is relieving outside. If your dog relives in the store it is your JOB to pick up after it. I don't have any wiggle room here. But what if the dog has diarrhea you ask? Well, the poor thing can't help it. Just pick up after it the best you can with you poop bags and alert the closest store employee of the situation and don't leave the spot until you have made sure that the area is cleaned. Again it is your JOB to clean up after you dog. I forgot poop bags? Oh I've been there. I didn't realize that my poop bag dispenser, extra two bags in my bait bag, and the extra roll I usually carried in my purse were all out. It happens to the best of us even to this Poop Police. But as it is my JOB to clean up after to puppy I stood by that spot without moving until a store employee came by, I inform them on the situation with my puppy, ask them politely to bring me one of their store plastic bags so that I may clean up after the puppy, and if it is necessary a paper towel as well. This shows that I am responsible and that I care what my dog does in public.

You notice that I use the word responsible many times during this little rant. I honestly don't care if people bring their pet dogs pretending to be service animals into stores as long as they are responsible about it. Irresponsible people make me mad because it's not people pretending to have service animals that make my job hard, it's the irresponsible people who don't clean up after their dog or keep them on a leash or keep them well groomed that make it hard for all service dog owners. As long as the person is responsible then, again, I really don't care. But as soon as your dog attacks one of my puppies in training because they are off leash and untrained in a store I'm gonna call you out.

Oh, and I am fully aware that little dogs can be service animals too. Yes, almost forgot to add that.

What it comes down to in my mind is not whether or not the dog is a true service animal, it's whether or not the person in charge of the dog is responsible.

Thank you for your time. :]

*This post was not intended to bash or ridicule anyone out there. I just love controversy so please leave comments even if you want to bite my head off for saying some of the things I have*


  1. My pet peeve!!
    I have been asked a couple of times "where can I buy one of those jackets" THEY ARE NOT FOR SALE! They came with the puppy, that is being raised to be a seeing eye dog.
    I think the problem of pet dogs going into stores is getting bigger, and causing access problems for us legitimate puppy raisers.
    I noticed in the last year, the stores in our town have all put up signs at the front door that say "assistance dogs only" where there havent been any before. All because Joe Blow thinks they can get away with taking their "pet" dog into a store, if they have a fake jacket, or even without a jacket. I always have my GDB ID card with me in my purse, but I supose if someone is bound and determined they can fake those to. ((sigh))

    I think store owners/managers should be able to ask for credentials for puppy raisers, the jacket says puppy in training. Here in Washington they can ask us to leave, because they are not a "working" Guide dog, but in Oregon even the puppies in training are protected by the law.

    How can we fix and or address this problem? There are always people who want to get around the system.

  2. ha ha we are all on a role today! I posted a post after Erin's as well. LOL!

  3. Nice post. I agree... I don't care what breed/size the dog is, as long as it's well-mannered and clean. Having a PIT with stress in public, any time she began to act up and not be well-behaved, it was our responsibility to leave.

    We've seen many little dogs with vests on that were well-behaved in public, but it's the person who was in line next to use who didn't need their dog then, but then saw mine and then had to go out to get their unmarked, rambunctious, barky, ill-mannered little dog who all of a sudden provided a "service" all the while the person allowed them to continue to jump on my dog in a perfect down. That's where I draw the line - irresponsibility!

  4. HAHAH OH boy you are funny. However i think we probably should be bashing the fake disabled people rather than the fake service dogs. After all its not their fault now is it? Granted that will really get into a sticky situation. hehee *not going there!!!*

    However, I must mention again, that GDB, GDA,GDF,SEGDI, etc.etc.. can ONLY RETIRE dogs that they are AWARE of has problems. There are many people who WON'T call the schools and let them know of their issues until its BAD, because they are afraid the school will do just that. So you can't say that its going to happen like that, because I've seen many,many times where it won't.

    Believe me, I've heard many horror stories, through my graduate email list etc..etc.. *shudders* its a wonder any service dogs are allowed into stores at all!


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