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Is That a Real Service Dog? #Infographic

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Just this week, I read an article in USA Today about emotional support animals and the  controversy that is developing in the airline world. In a nutshell, airlines are concerned that passengers are declaring pets as service animals both to avoid fees and to gain special privilege, whether that’s flying with pets out of their underseat carriers (a no-no except for service animals) or flying with an animal in-cabin when he or she is over the weight restrictions (about 20 pounds on most airlines).

Rules may soon get tightened up. According to the article, “A Department of Transportation advisory committee is scheduled to meet Oct. 12 to decide whether an emotional-support animal is a service animal. Airlines are pushing the government to adopt a more restrictive definition.”

Regardless of the committee’s findings, it’s important–perhaps more than ever before–that emotional support dogs and other animals be declared only by people that actually need their services. The support that these dogs provide people is invaluable but, when people skirt the rules and declare a pet as an Emotional Support Animal, it puts the rights of people who truly need the services of an ESA at risk.

Recently we received an infographic from Orvis (below) that addresses this topic, comparing the rights and regulations that cover Service Dogs, Emotional Support Dogs, and Therapy Dogs.

If you need the assistance of a dog–whether a Service Dog or an Emotional Support Dog–by all means take advantage of the rules in place to ensure that your dog can perform his duties at your side.

If you don’t need a Service Dog or an Emotional Support Dog, please don’t create more controversy in the travel world by claiming your dog is an ESA dog just to skip the airline fees or to give your dog the chance to get out of his carrier during the flight. It is dishonest and wrong.

Through the years, we’ve put in over a million miles in the air–but, today, we fly only when there’s no other choice, such as to an industry event across the country. Instead, we’ve rediscovered the joy of road travel–which is a lot more fun with your dog along!

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Dawn Rasor

Wednesday 12th of October 2016

Great info! Thanks for this!

desithebonde

Tuesday 11th of October 2016

im going to say since i am all most death my pom when i got him he help with hearing were i can not now i got prncess a chiawaii she my tia do she has help me with heart attack she pulled me out of them when paramedic did not now what was going on

Paris & John

Tuesday 11th of October 2016

The work that service dogs can do is just absolutely amazing!!

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