when is a toy poodle a service dog?

Discussion in 'IHG | Rewards Club/Ambassador' started by jonspencer, Dec 15, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. jonspencer

    jonspencer Silver Member

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    I asked this question to guest relations on a recent stay at an USA - based IC after being rudely awoken by yapping from the adjacent room

    to my amazement, the reply is below (this must be part of Obamacare :eek:)


    What is a Service Dog?

    Service Dogs, Emotional Support Dogs and even Therapy Dogs can benefit people with disabilities associated with many diagnoses, including: Arthritis Ataxia (poor balance) Autism Blindness or Impaired Vision Deafness or Impaired Hearing Diabetes Cardio/Pulmonary Disease Cerebral Palsy Physical mobility Issues Multiple Sclerosis (M.S.) Psychiatric Disabilities Seizure Disorders (Epilepsy) Severe Allergy Alert Spinal Bifida Spinal Cord/Head Trauma Stroke Anxiety Depression Bipolar disorder Mood disorder Fear/phobias Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Suicidal Thoughts/Tendencies Adjustment Disorder Generalized anxiety disorder Social anxiety disorder Panic disorder Separation anxiety Dissociative Disorders Factitious Disorders Eating Disorders Impulse-Control Disorders Mental Disorders Due to a General Medical Condition Neurocognitive Disorders Mood Disorders Neurodevelopmental Disorders Personality Disorders Psychotic Disorders Sexual and Gender Identity Disorders Sleep Disorders Somatoform Disorders Substance Related Disorders This is just a partial list of disabilities that qualify under ADA.

    What is the difference between a Service Animal, Psychiatric Service Animal, and Assistance Animal?

    They are the same, with respect to protections and rights. The term “Service Dog” is the federal legal term and the most commonly used.


    Are Emotional Support Dogs protected under Federal Law?


    Under the Fair Housing Amendments Act (FHAA) and the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA), an individual who meets the proper criteria is entitled to an emotional support dog to assist them with their life. The FHAA protects individuals by allowing their emotional support dog to live with them (even when there are no pet policies in place). The ACAA protects individuals by allowing the emotional support dog to fly with them in the cabin of an airplane (without having to pay any additional fees). Any dog can be an emotional support dog, and emotional support dogs do not have to be professionally-trained.


    What species of animal can be an Emotional Support Animal?


    The Federal laws that protect Emotional Support Animals and their handlers (the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, Air Carrier Access Act 49 U.S.C. 41705, and Dept. of Transportation 14 C.F.R. Part 382), neither specify nor exclude any animal species or breed. With respect to Emotional Support Animals, there are no species or breed restrictions. Consequently, cats, rabbits, miniature pigs, ferrets, birds, etc. may be ESAs.


    Do Emotional Support Animals have to be professionally trained?


    Emotional support dogs/animals do not have to be professionally-trained to perform any task. Service dogs can be trained by their owners or in any other manner the owner desires.


    What can be asked about the disability and what is public knowledge?


    You are NOT allowed to be asked by an owner, manager, or other representative of a business what your disability is that allows you to have a service dog. That information is private and you do not have to disclose it to anyone if you are asked. The only information that may be asked is if it is a service dog, and what tasks the service dog is trained to perform for you. For example, if you have a mental illness that requires that you take medication and your service dog is trained to alert you when it is time to take your medication by tugging at your shirt, then you may explain the task your service dog performs, but you are not obligated to divulge the nature of your illness or disability.
     
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  2. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    My wife and I usher at many local theaters, just this weekend I noticed how few service animals we see at the theater as compared to the number we see when we fly. I guess the difference is flying is more stressful than a night at the theater?
     
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  3. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    After reading this, I am now searching for a "service gorilla" to deal with obnoxious TSA agents, incompetent airline personnel and DYKWIA passengers!

     
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  4. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Basically, any dog is an emotional support dog. Well, except for bomb sniffing dogs, maybe.
     
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  5. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Anxiety? Sleep disorders? Aren't all FFers anxious about jetlag?
     
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  6. newbluesea
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    newbluesea Gold Member

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    Not sure of the need for the somewhat silly but really quite tenuous connection between Obamacare and service animals or did you actually believe that they have only existed for the last two years:rolleyes:

    Not knowing where you are from I find it hard to believe that guests staying with animals is more predominant in the US than other parts of the world ( unless you happen to be Moslem who consider dogs unclean). In Europe for example that's most certainly not the case.

    The topic of service animals which crops up on a fairly regular basis on these boards always seem to fall in to two often sharply divided camps ...those who hate animals ( even while professing that they don't:)) and those who consider their pets (and other animals) and integral part of a lives/family and their treatment a reflection of a civilized society.

    Whereas I can sympathize with your disturbance/loss of sleep I can safely say that I eternally hope for the day when hotels guests are as well behaved as most dogs (service or otherwise) I have met.
    In all my times of staying at hotels I have never once been disturbed by a noisy dog.
    I have not been quite so lucky with loud drunks, screeching kids, fighting spouses, noisy sex etc etc however.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2014
  7. Mapsmith
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    Mapsmith Gold Member

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    The answer, I believe is in the second section. Where it says that "an individual who meets the proper criteria"

    This leads me to believe that a person claiming their 'toy poodle' is an Emotional Service Animal, must meet the proper criteria. That would be a prescription from a licensed mental health professional.

    And, although you can not be asked what your disability is, you can be asked what service the animal has been trained to provide. Trained is the operative word.

    Your opinion may vary
     
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  8. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    Well, according to the legal definition kindly provided by @jonspencer above, perhaps just about anything could be classified as a "service animal", including a Komodo dragon, great silverback ape, red-tailed hawk, etc. Recall the flap on board the recent WN flight when a passenger brought their "emotional support animal" that happened to be a not-so-small pot-bellied pig!

    Or just simply sticking with the animals mentioned above, it should get pretty interesting back in "steerage class" on the plane (where I am often found), with a couple of large cockatoos and macaws being brought on board, or kept in a hotel room, as "emotional support animals"!

    I'm all for the airline industry deciding first for the passengers safety and well-being, and then whether an animal on board the passenger section of the plane is feasible. The same goes for the hotel industry. They shouldn't have to be held hostage by such foolishness. Otherwise, the skies and hotels will end up like Noah's ark, only without Noah around to keep things calm! :(
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2014
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  9. LIH Prem
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    LIH Prem Gold Member

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  10. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    E.g., Delta's page: http://www.delta.com/content/www/en...ravel-needs/disabilities/service-animals.html

    For fun, ask your doctor if they've ever been asked by a patient to "certify" that their dog/cat is needed as a emotional support animal for an upcoming plane trip.
     
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  11. LIH Prem
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    LIH Prem Gold Member

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    Those laws and policies are being abused, but the laws themselves make it difficult to challenge it. Something has to change. It's ridiculous.

    My invisible service rabbit, Harvey, needs to sit in the seat next to me when I'm not upgraded.
     
  12. newbluesea
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    newbluesea Gold Member

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    And of course all of this is quite related to a hotel's guest dog barking in the next room?:rolleyes:
     
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  13. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    It must be the Obamacare that was mentioned earlier! :p
     
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  14. LIH Prem
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    Reach down and pet your service animal. It will make you feel much much better.

    -David
     
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  15. newbluesea
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    newbluesea Gold Member

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    I know this is going to surprise the hell out of you I do feel better when I reach down and pet any animal. Try it sometime it might make even you feel much better. :)
     
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  16. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    My wife would be happy to go on longer trips if we brought out two cats with us.
     
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  17. jonspencer

    jonspencer Silver Member

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    once upon a time, the only service dog was a "seeing eye dog"

    now, as noted above, in the USA any dog could be a service dog :eek:
     
  18. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    But would the cats be happy?
     
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  19. iolaire
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    That's why I'd have some service mice for the cats..
     
  20. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Once upon a time a lot of things were worse than today. It's called progress. The fact that some people - perhaps many - abuse the regulations to bring their regular pooch into an establishment without paying the fee (or finding a pet-friendly place) shouldn't be impact those who truly need and deserve those "benefits" (I put it in quotes thinking of Chris Rock's skit "Superman can't fly" -- see Youtube, NSFW). And in fact I wonder if the majority of truly disabled people wouldn't prefer a stricter qualification and certification mechanism.
     
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  21. jackplum
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    I am about to get a service penguin
     
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  22. dhammer53
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    dhammer53 Gold Member

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    Love that movie.

    Shame on everyone for making fun of people that have a service dog. You should never have the need to use one of these animals.
     
  23. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    Since I've started Dialysis I have the right to go on full disability via SSI. I'm thankful that I'm in a situation where I can keep working and generally maintain my standard of comfort and travel (at least at this point). (And not apply for disability.)
     
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  24. jackplum
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    In all seriousness, I wish a mechanism existed for verification. Like others, I could be on disability with all the benefits accorded, but I am healthy and fit enough to hold off till needed.

    However, since humans are in the animal kingdom. I wish to apply to be a service, emotional support, and/or therapy human/animal. Who wants to take me on a trip? Just sayin' - I can be very useful in a variety of roles.:eek:
     
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  25. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    Concur. There needs to be a system of verification for "service dogs/animals" put in place. Like most other things related to travel today, it will continue to be abused y folks who think that it's perfectly fine for them to "scam the system", unless someone says differently. And if the airlines and hotels won't enforce this, the abuses will likely continue and get worse.
     

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