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Old 05-26-2013, 09:43 PM   #1
MacClemsons
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Dog in the park

Saw a dog in HS today - NOT a guide dog from what I could tell because those wear a harness. This was a yorkie. How'd that get through bag check? Are animals allowed in the park? Several SWW event staff saw it and didn't bat an eye.
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Old 05-26-2013, 09:47 PM   #2
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They could have said it was a therapy dog to help with stress. I recently began talking to a lady who trains guide dogs to see what id have to do to have a career in that. She said that dogs you see, like Yorkies, could be "used" as dogs to help with stress. While there are dogs that do that, there are also people who just say that to be able to take their dog places. I'm not saying that's why but it could be. It's ridiculous that someone wouldn't just leave their dog at home or board it. But people do it all the time.
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Old 05-26-2013, 09:51 PM   #3
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Similar to therapy dogs for stress, there are also dogs that can sense seizures before they happen. They don't wear the harnesses, but they can be literally be a lifesaver.
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Old 05-26-2013, 09:58 PM   #4
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We just got back from a trip two weeks ago and dogs in general are on the rise in the theme parks. Most of them wore some sort of identification as guide/therapy/medical assistance dogs, but there were some that didn't.

I really wish that WDW would make working dogs wear some sort of identification, be it harness, tag, leash with medical symbols, or something like that. I've been working at teaching my 3 year old never to bother working dogs and never ask to pet or interact with any sort of medical guide dog because they have important jobs to do. Its tough when the dogs don't wear anything distinguishing, because then they just look like the pets at the park and its confusing for kids.

As a side note, in the airport I saw a medical dog of some sort that was wearing a harness, but then the harness had a patch that said "ask to pet me, I'm friendly". I thought that was crazy, talk about sending mixed messages!
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Old 05-27-2013, 12:00 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CandleontheWater View Post

As a side note, in the airport I saw a medical dog of some sort that was wearing a harness, but then the harness had a patch that said "ask to pet me, I'm friendly". I thought that was crazy, talk about sending mixed messages!
Agree. One of our options was ask to pet me but we didn't go with that because SOME services dogs shouldn't be petted. This way we try and keep the idea of 'working' dog and 'pet' separate.
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Old 05-27-2013, 12:10 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CandleontheWater View Post
We just got back from a trip two weeks ago and dogs in general are on the rise in the theme parks. Most of them wore some sort of identification as guide/therapy/medical assistance dogs, but there were some that didn't.

I really wish that WDW would make working dogs wear some sort of identification, be it harness, tag, leash with medical symbols, or something like that. I've been working at teaching my 3 year old never to bother working dogs and never ask to pet or interact with any sort of medical guide dog because they have important jobs to do. Its tough when the dogs don't wear anything distinguishing, because then they just look like the pets at the park and its confusing for kids.

As a side note, in the airport I saw a medical dog of some sort that was wearing a harness, but then the harness had a patch that said "ask to pet me, I'm friendly". I thought that was crazy, talk about sending mixed messages!
Legally you can not require proof of the animal being a service dog. Harnesses and tags are not what make the dog a service animal it is the task it performs.
You can only ask is the Dog a service dog? And if they say yes you can ask what task/dog do they perform. That is to ensure that the person isn't lying or is aware of the change in laws.
Now technically a therapy dog is not a service dog as of 2011. The ADA laws were changed to say that only dogs that perform a task or service are protected by law. Therapy dogs are specifically mentioned as not fitting this bill. The dog must be trained to guide, retrieve, protect, etc not simply provide comfort. The issue is many big companies are too afraid of getting sued to question and frankly many don't know the law changed in 2011.
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Old 05-27-2013, 12:26 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wilkeliza View Post
Legally you can not require proof of the animal being a service dog. Harnesses and tags are not what make the dog a service animal it is the task it performs.
You can only ask is the Dog a service dog? And if they say yes you can ask what task/dog do they perform. That is to ensure that the person isn't lying or is aware of the change in laws.
Now technically a therapy dog is not a service dog as of 2011. The ADA laws were changed to say that only dogs that perform a task or service are protected by law. Therapy dogs are specifically mentioned as not fitting this bill. The dog must be trained to guide, retrieve, protect, etc not simply provide comfort. The issue is many big companies are too afraid of getting sued to question and frankly many don't know the law changed in 2011.
The law was clarified and tightened up in 2011, but therapy dogs were technically not considered Service Dogs even prior to 2011.

I agree with you though that many companies are not aware of the law and are afraid of being sued.

A DIS poster who was a waitress posted one one of these kinds of threads a few years ago about someone who frequently brought a 'service dog' into the restaurant where she worked. I don't remember the specifics, but the dog was unruly, loud and stealing food off the table. The poster wondered what if there was anything they could do about it since they thought they could do nothing without getting into trouble with the ADA.
I don't know what actually happened, but a number of people posted links that showed even someone using a service dog could be asked to remove the dog if it is not under control of the person.

She was not aware if that and my guess is a lot of businesses are not. Just businesses enforcing that would do a lot to stop people bringing their family pet with them and claiming it is a service dog.
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Old 05-27-2013, 08:36 AM   #8
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I would think bringing a dog into the parks would tend to limit the theme park experience of the owner. Obviously it could not go on rides, at least the best ones. As long as they are not in restaurants (except service dogs) they would not bother me.
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Old 05-27-2013, 12:33 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wilkeliza View Post
You can only ask is the Dog a service dog? And if they say yes you can ask what task/dog do they perform. That is to ensure that the person isn't lying or is aware of the change in laws.
After looking into this issue at the museum I work for, I was under the impression that you couldn't ask anything that might force someone to disclose their disability.
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Old 05-27-2013, 12:41 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wilkeliza View Post
Legally you can not require proof of the animal being a service dog. Harnesses and tags are not what make the dog a service animal it is the task it performs.
You can only ask is the Dog a service dog? And if they say yes you can ask what task/dog do they perform. That is to ensure that the person isn't lying or is aware of the change in laws.
Now technically a therapy dog is not a service dog as of 2011. The ADA laws were changed to say that only dogs that perform a task or service are protected by law. Therapy dogs are specifically mentioned as not fitting this bill. The dog must be trained to guide, retrieve, protect, etc not simply provide comfort. The issue is many big companies are too afraid of getting sued to question and frankly many don't know the law changed in 2011.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TygerHawks View Post
After looking into this issue at the museum I work for, I was under the impression that you couldn't ask anything that might force someone to disclose their disability.
As wilkeliza posted, you can ask 2 questions:
1) is this dog a service animal required because of a disability?

2) what work or task has the dog been trained to perform?

Both of those questions can be answered without making the person disclose the nature of their disability.
Here is a link to the ADA Service Briefs for businesses:

http://www.ada.gov/service_animals_2010.htm
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:40 AM   #11
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I've often thought of getting a mobility service dog.....but I wouldn't know where to "park it" when on rides (he'd have to be a large breed with a harness). I'm getting a Black Russian Terrior next month, the males average around 130 lbs. I'm thinking I'd probably need to crate him while in the parks.
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Old 05-27-2013, 02:02 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by CandleontheWater View Post
As a side note, in the airport I saw a medical dog of some sort that was wearing a harness, but then the harness had a patch that said "ask to pet me, I'm friendly". I thought that was crazy, talk about sending mixed messages!
I wonder if the dog was being trained. I don't know much about service dogs, but I bet they have to have the ability to be friendly and not get upset if a stranger tries to touch them. Perhaps one way they teach the dog to be used to a lot of strangers is through having a lot of people pet them?
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Old 05-27-2013, 07:31 AM   #13
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I wonder if the dog was being trained. I don't know much about service dogs, but I bet they have to have the ability to be friendly and not get upset if a stranger tries to touch them. Perhaps one way they teach the dog to be used to a lot of strangers is through having a lot of people pet them?
You're right in that they do train this but it's done during the class period and done at pet friendly places, not at WDW.

I'm sure, just like the GAC, there is going to be a small number of people who will abuse the system to get their dog in the park.
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Old 05-27-2013, 05:16 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by CandleontheWater View Post
As a side note, in the airport I saw a medical dog of some sort that was wearing a harness, but then the harness had a patch that said "ask to pet me, I'm friendly". I thought that was crazy, talk about sending mixed messages!

Actually, it's kind of brilliant. "Ask to pet me" reminds people that just running up and petting a service animal is not okay. That tag probably reduces the number of faux pas in that area.
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Old 05-26-2013, 09:54 PM   #15
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Saw this addressed on SWW thread after I posted. Just thought it was strange. She even had a poddy pad for it to use sitting in front of stage.
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