|Barked: Mon Jan 28, '13 1:50pm PST |
|Hi. My name is Carrie and I have a Pug, Joey, who is my Service Dog.
The first thing you need is a letter or prescription from your doctor stating that you need a Service Dog.You must take your dog through advanced obedience training so you can be sure they will behave in public. You must train them to do at least three tasks to help you with your disability. It can not be natural behaviors like giving affection or just making you feel better. That is an Emotional Service Animal and does not qualify under the ADA rules for access.
I suffer from PTSD. So Joey is trained to turn on lights in dark rooms (my son made switches by the floor for him); at my signal he will take me to a restroom if I am dissacociating; he will bring me my cell phone to call 911. Do you see how they are specific tasks trained to help you with your disability. This takes them from the level of pets and Emotional Service Animal with no access rights, to Service Dogs that have full access rights.
As of this time there is no certifying agency for Service Dogs. You do not have to have your dog wear a special vest, but I have found it helps with Joey as people don't realize that a Pug can be a Service Dog. We do not have any questions about access.
Hope this helps!
Carrie and Joey
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