No More Seeing-Eye Ferret! US Government Defined Service Animals as Dogs

What is a service animal? The landmark Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 didn't state that clearly, so for the past twenty years, people have been claiming to have all sorts of service animals as a loophole to carry them around while traveling or shopping in stores:

The law termed it "any animal individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability" — but here was the rub: That seemed to imply that an elephant, just for instance, could make an excellent service animal.

Elephants are very smart. And strong. They can carry things for people and give them rides. Yet surely the lawmakers didn't intend for people to have service elephants they could go shopping with in grocery stores and travel with on planes.

Fortunately, in the last 20 years, no one ever seems to have claimed to have a service elephant. On the other hand, plenty of people have claimed to have service cats and rats and parrots and ferrets and llamas and iguanas and at least one snake (yes, really, a boa constrictor). And they've tried to take these service animals along with them everywhere — the way the law assured them they could — including into places where other people told them they were very out of place.

Impasse ensued. Confusion reigned. Until this March, when the government issued a new definition.

Well that loophole is now closed. The United States government has defined a service animal to be a trained dog (and under certain conditions, miniature horses).

This seems to have left monkey helpers hung out to dry!,0,6972939.story?track=rss

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"...all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights..." That means HUMAN. Take that you mangy mutts. We granted the right for certain animals to enter places where they were normally forbidden. For our own amusement we can now take away aforementioned right. Enjoy your crummy alienable rights nonhumans. Buahahaha.
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I'm with mistwolf on this one.
While I see your point remf3, it's a slippery slope when it comes to defining service animals. What happens if the person needs their old, smelly mutt in order to deal with an emotional problem?
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I work in an area where everyone claims to have a service animal. I have seen one authentic seeing eye dog (Melba and she was a sweet and well trained dog). The other animals have consisted of old, mangy, smelly mutts who would run to the door of the room and bark at every passerby. They had the *official* collar on and everything. We've actually started asking for IDs as officially trained service animals have a picture ID and have tried to keep out the non-service animals.

And before someone gets the pitchforks, I work in an Emergency Room. Real service animals are welcome but if you're bringing in a dog that looks sicker then you, leaves puddles and piles on the floor and can't stop barking at people doing their job, it's time to leave Poopsie at home.
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Good for this! It was really bothering me that people getting help from non-dog animals were getting away with something. I mean, animals helping people with agoraphobia and other anxiety disorders? Pfft! Call us when you have a REAL disability (Until we think of a way to do away with help for those, too, because people with disabilities have them because of moral failings and DESERVE their lives!)

Please have sarcasm font installed before reading. :P
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