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Old 01-19-2013, 03:02 AM   #31
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I'm just chiming in on some other service animal points - if you'll excuse the pun, I have no dog in the fight, but working in the medical field I have seen MANY types of service animals you might not expect.

There are service dogs, and that's what most people think of when they hear "service animal". Yet, there are cats as well, even monkeys and miniature horses. HOWEVER, the current definition from the Civil Rights Division identifies only dogs and miniature horses as service animals under ADA. The animal must be performing an actual task for the person, and not just be a "comfort animal" (as in, helping the person feel calmer, for example.) Not saying they're not as important...just specifying the legal definition (as of 2010).

Those tasks can be very diverse. Service animals can guide the blind, sure, and others have mentioned alerting the people to seizures or fluctuations in blood sugar. They can also do simple tasks, like turn lights on or off, retrieve dropped items, alert a hearing-impaired person to noises, or even dial 911 if the person is unconscious (yes, it's possible - usually through a speed dial button).

I have a friend whose young son's dog is trained to do several things for him, in fact. She sleeps in his room and monitors his sleep disorders (she wakes him if she can or wakes his parents if she can't), is tethered to him outside the house so that he doesn't go somewhere dangerous, she is trained to pull him away from situations where he is becoming agitated (like crowds) and calm him, she is trained to search for him if he becomes lost, and probably a few other specific situations I can't remember right now. Before they got her, the family was unable to do something as simple as go grocery shopping. Now, they are planning their first ever Disney vacation.

Disabilities aren't always visible, and service animals aren't always obvious. But yes, they do have a very important place in people's lives. Kudos to DCL (and Disney in general) for being so good at recognizing that.
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Old 01-19-2013, 10:25 AM   #32
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I wonder, too, how well those rooms are cleaned after an animal. We are on the other end, I have a daughter who is HIGHLY allergic to animals, especially cats and dogs. If we were in a room where an animal had been on the previous cruise, she could have severe reactions.
I hope that DCL does a thorough cleaning of the "animal" rooms and also reserves just a few that they typically put animals into.
I can respect the need for the animal, just worry about us getting that room later. I've seen 2 dogs on DCL in the 7 cruises I've done.
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Old 01-19-2013, 12:00 PM   #33
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I wanted to thank those who have shared their stories of their service animals. I considered myself fairly educated on this subject, but I had no idea they could detect seizures and blood sugars! Gotta love the awesomeness of animals!

For those who are concerned about allergies, I'd be more afraid of having a cabin after a normal guest with animals, frankly. I know we have 2 dogs who shed like crazy. We have animal hair on ALL of our clothing, I'm sure, so when we unpack, it is going to get in the cabin.
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Old 01-23-2013, 02:01 AM   #34
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Very interesting thread. My DD with Autism that is 11 is on the waitlist for a Service Dog. I just can't imagine a service horse making it onto a cruise... Can you imagine the size of the kiddie pool for gumdrop?

Seriously, I appreciate this thread and just a great low key discussion about this. I figure the SD will come with her to Disney World, but probably we'll leave it @ home if we do a cruise... the assistance it provides her is important, but not "physically life saving" like that of a seizure dog or diabetes dog.

I actually read just recently of the opposite of the dog biting a man... I read about a man that was harassed and assaulted a cruiser that had a service dog. The assualter was promptly disembarked at the next port to return home on his own just in time to possibly receive a summons for assault from the Port Canaveral police. (not sure if it was DCL).

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Old 01-23-2013, 09:13 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by ravensilverlight View Post
HOWEVER, the current definition from the Civil Rights Division identifies only dogs and miniature horses as service animals under ADA. The animal must be performing an actual task for the person, and not just be a "comfort animal" (as in, helping the person feel calmer, for example.)
I own a miniature horse. I think he's incredible and extremely smart but I could never imagine him as a service animal. Now don't get me wrong, he is extremely well trained as he is a decorated show horse (not by us) and stood at stud his entire life. He won't go near his food dish when you are in his stall, he will stand for grooming, the vet, bathing, etc. etc. But he runs like crazy, poops and pees all over. He loves to roll constantly!! I will keep my little man in his stall and his field.

I've seen comfort miniature horses but never a service one. Would definitely like to see one in action though. I'm sure it's extremely fascinating to watch.
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:43 PM   #36
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I have a service dog, trained and registered. He has saved my life on multiple occasions. He is a shih-tzu. Not what one would think to be a service dog. He is trained to alert me of my blood sugars. People don't respect service animals. My dog is small and very cute, clearly marked he is a service dog but yet people will come up and start petting him. They are working! People should ask if they can be petted. I've had adults have their children come up and pet him. I wonder what the circumstance was of the dog bite. I agree, some people abuse the system, but it's very hard to get them trained and certified plus expensive. Mine has papers and a photo ID. We have to go through all the countries the cruise goes to and get authorization and permission from those countries to have the animal come into port and the Captain has to show that info to the government officials. We are in the process of getting ours allowed to get to Grand Cayman. We do not plan to get off the ship, however, we still have to have it. It's a 3 month process and can get very expensive.
Thank you so much for posting this!

We were recently on the Dream and saw someone with a darling small white dog on Castaway Cay. Yes, there were many comments about how that couldn't be a service animal and how the woman looked fine, etc.

I have a friend who needs a service dog and is sick and tired of being asked how long she's been blind (she's not), and being told that she can't bring her dog into so many places -- including doctor's offices! -- that she can practically quote the ADA regulations at people. It's a shame that a lack of knowledge of these things causes people to stick their feet into their mouths.

As, apart from this, I do not have a lot of experience with this issue, I am so pleased that you posted, as it's a good way of educating the uninformed. My own guess was that the dog we saw was there as a seizure predictor, so it's good to learn that they can help with blood sugar levels. Every little bit of information helps us to not act in an ignorant way.
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:54 PM   #37
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I think it is so disrespectful that parents don't teach their children about service dogs and proper manners around them. My kids learned at a very young age that if they ever see a dog with a service jacket on that they could look but not touch.

They were so good following the rules when they were taught them and the reasons why they should be followed. After they would always go near so they could look at the dog but they would never attempt to pet them. They would get rewarded every so often when the person would let them know they could pet the dog, but they would always look to me to make sure it was ok. Of course I would thank the person for letting them.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:17 PM   #38
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I think it's less a case of disrespect than one of simply not knowing.

There are plenty of services animals who do NOT wear vests, which makes it harder to figure out. And most people don't want to be rude and ask questions. Most, sadly, not all. The questions my friend gets makes you wonder if there are any people left in the world who aren't rude.

We have had service animals visit school when my daughter was younger and we always tried to ensure she not touch any animals she doesn't know without permission. But guess what -- I volunteer in animal rescue and there are still an overwhelming number of kids who run at the animals, parents in tow, who don't ask.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:47 PM   #39
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That's a good point about how people with allergies can be affected even if an animal wasn't in the room.
I suspect that most service animal receive excellent care, including grooming (I know I'd be fastidious about the care of a $20,000 service dog), which is beyond the average level of grooming, so service animals probably have fewer allergans (dander) to leave behind than your average household pet. I think most people have acquaintances who always have some hair on their clothes, even if the pet is nowhere around.
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Old 01-23-2013, 05:08 PM   #40
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There are plenty of services animals who do NOT wear vests, which makes it harder to figure out. And most people don't want to be rude and ask questions. Most, sadly, not all.
If all service dogs wore a vest, I think there'd be a lot less misunderstanding about their purpose. I think most people realize that a dog wearing the vest is a "working dog" and performing a task. It would educate the public that smaller dogs can be service dogs, too. Otherwise, to most people it DOES look just like a pet.

Unfortunately, I do know a family who have claimed their little dog was a service animal (it is NOT) just so it could accompany them into restaurants, stores, etc. I guess they could buy a vest as well, but they probably couldn't be bothered. Boo for jerky people!
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Old 01-27-2013, 06:01 PM   #41
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I am booking a cruise and searched for a post of service animals on board and glad to get this information. But I would like to educate some of the stereo typing and why it happens, or miss information.

1) I have to say I am prejudice in this area also and I am always working on it, I have a guide dog ($40,000 worth of training), but I do myself question those with invisible disabilities, I am sorry to say, I do. One of the reasons, is because there are so many people who claim their pet is a service dog, there seems to be an epidemic of it where I am from, just go into home deposit, costco or Walmart and see how many dogs are in the store, to me way to many to be real service animals. Yet would it be better to discriminate against the one or allow the other 99 in who may not be a true service dog, I don't think so. It could just be where I live but in my mind out of the 100 dogs I see in the store when I go, at least 90% are not truly covered under ADA, but I have to remember to not be prejudiced because one of those dogs truly are and for that one we have to be allow the law that is not perfect to be the way it is.

2) the person who said companion dog and then comment on those that make the person feel comfortable need to understand he/she was incorrect in his thinking. Companion dogs are very much being allowed in public under Ada and it is true they are not suppose to be allowed, but the confusion is the law and people's thinking. HUD a federal agency change policy to allow companion dogs in housing the same rights as service dogs, they can not be required to pay a deposit, and they can not be denied. But there is a different between companion dog, therapy dog and service dog. Therapy dog which some of you confused with a companion dog, is a dog that is trained to go into a hospital to visit patients or to the library to have kids read to them, they are not protected under the ADA laws. A companion dog is usually for older people who need a dog to give them a purpose in life, to give them a reason to get up and go for a walk each day, HUD has made them equal to service dogs because they do service a huge purpose to elderly or sick people. But where some have confused them with service dog is also important, a dog who works with an autistic child or with a PTSD vet is a service dog and not a therapy or companion dog. It seems that at least one person tried to put them in the catagory as not ADA, know these dogs do a service and are considered ADA protected, they stop a child for bolting into a street, or wondering into a woods and getting lost, or the read the tension in the vet and realize they have to put their body between the vet and the person in an elevator so that the vet does not go into a anxiety attack and gives them their personal space to relax.

3) people stated that service dogs need paperwork or registration or certificates, or vest or something. Here is where the law is good good and bad bad. No a dog does not need anything, not even training under the ADA laws and why it is so much better for companies to throw up there arms and just let dogs in. The bad bad is that you can buy all that on line and it means nothing, yes you can go online and buy a harness and say you are blind ( this is the only one that could get you into trouble because there is a law that says in all 50 states that you can not impersonate a blind person with a cane or dog), but you can buy a vest that says service animal for about $35, you can buy a paper that says your dog is trained and certified and get a card and papers with you picture and dogs picture on it for around $50. The good good is that ADA does not require anything except you word that your dog is a service animal and how it services you.

I hope this helps clear up some of the confusion. I promise I am working on my prejudice and not saying all dogs without vest and without visible disabilities are not service animals, I try to reserve that opinion to the little yorkie or Chou that is dressed in pearls and dresses and being pushed in a baby carriage, who tells the store clerk that yes the dog is a service animal (ha-ha).
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:28 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gilesmt View Post
I am booking a cruise and searched for a post of service animals on board and glad to get this information. But I would like to educate some of the stereo typing and why it happens, or miss information.

1) I have to say I am prejudice in this area also and I am always working on it, I have a guide dog ($40,000 worth of training), but I do myself question those with invisible disabilities, I am sorry to say, I do. One of the reasons, is because there are so many people who claim their pet is a service dog, there seems to be an epidemic of it where I am from, just go into home deposit, costco or Walmart and see how many dogs are in the store, to me way to many to be real service animals. Yet would it be better to discriminate against the one or allow the other 99 in who may not be a true service dog, I don't think so. It could just be where I live but in my mind out of the 100 dogs I see in the store when I go, at least 90% are not truly covered under ADA, but I have to remember to not be prejudiced because one of those dogs truly are and for that one we have to be allow the law that is not perfect to be the way it is.

2) the person who said companion dog and then comment on those that make the person feel comfortable need to understand he/she was incorrect in his thinking. Companion dogs are very much being allowed in public under Ada and it is true they are not suppose to be allowed, but the confusion is the law and people's thinking. HUD a federal agency change policy to allow companion dogs in housing the same rights as service dogs, they can not be required to pay a deposit, and they can not be denied. But there is a different between companion dog, therapy dog and service dog. Therapy dog which some of you confused with a companion dog, is a dog that is trained to go into a hospital to visit patients or to the library to have kids read to them, they are not protected under the ADA laws. A companion dog is usually for older people who need a dog to give them a purpose in life, to give them a reason to get up and go for a walk each day, HUD has made them equal to service dogs because they do service a huge purpose to elderly or sick people. But where some have confused them with service dog is also important, a dog who works with an autistic child or with a PTSD vet is a service dog and not a therapy or companion dog. It seems that at least one person tried to put them in the catagory as not ADA, know these dogs do a service and are considered ADA protected, they stop a child for bolting into a street, or wondering into a woods and getting lost, or the read the tension in the vet and realize they have to put their body between the vet and the person in an elevator so that the vet does not go into a anxiety attack and gives them their personal space to relax.

3) people stated that service dogs need paperwork or registration or certificates, or vest or something. Here is where the law is good good and bad bad. No a dog does not need anything, not even training under the ADA laws and why it is so much better for companies to throw up there arms and just let dogs in. The bad bad is that you can buy all that on line and it means nothing, yes you can go online and buy a harness and say you are blind ( this is the only one that could get you into trouble because there is a law that says in all 50 states that you can not impersonate a blind person with a cane or dog), but you can buy a vest that says service animal for about $35, you can buy a paper that says your dog is trained and certified and get a card and papers with you picture and dogs picture on it for around $50. The good good is that ADA does not require anything except you word that your dog is a service animal and how it services you.

I hope this helps clear up some of the confusion. I promise I am working on my prejudice and not saying all dogs without vest and without visible disabilities are not service animals, I try to reserve that opinion to the little yorkie or Chou that is dressed in pearls and dresses and being pushed in a baby carriage, who tells the store clerk that yes the dog is a service animal (ha-ha).
Thank you for your post! Yes, you're correct, I was really unclear in my post about "calming" being a task. There are different conditions which require a service animal, some of which actually have "calming" as a task the animal performs. However, other animals without special training who simply calm the person just by being present (like therapy dogs in long-term care and so on) aren't the same. It's also important to note that there are different definitions of "assistance" or "service" animals from different authorities, like the Fair Housing Act and Air Carrier Access Act. So in some cases, ADA is not the only rule. I should have been more clear!

Also, I wanted to point out...there is a lot of confusion and misinformation about whether or not a person can be asked about their dog. Many places are under the impression that they can't ask at all, and are very leery of even bringing up the subject with a person whose need for the dog may be one of those "invisible" conditions. There are TWO questions permitted: "Is this a service animal?" and "What work does he/she do?" Other than that, no vest, card, certificate, demonstration, or other questions are required.

There is a ton of information available at the ADA website (www.ada.gov) and I definitely encourage anyone with questions to check out their site! The more people know, the better!
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:36 PM   #43
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I saw a sign on secret deck seven aft that said "Service Dog Releif Area" so I assume there is a spot where they releave themselves.

If you don't beleive me, I can send you a picture. My son was sitting there until I pointed it out

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Old 01-27-2013, 07:44 PM   #44
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Very interesting thread. My DD with Autism that is 11 is on the waitlist for a Service Dog. I just can't imagine a service horse making it onto a cruise... Can you imagine the size of the kiddie pool for gumdrop?

Seriously, I appreciate this thread and just a great low key discussion about this. I figure the SD will come with her to Disney World, but probably we'll leave it @ home if we do a cruise... the assistance it provides her is important, but not "physically life saving" like that of a seizure dog or diabetes dog.

I actually read just recently of the opposite of the dog biting a man... I read about a man that was harassed and assaulted a cruiser that had a service dog. The assualter was promptly disembarked at the next port to return home on his own just in time to possibly receive a summons for assault from the Port Canaveral police. (not sure if it was DCL).

Thanks,
Paul
Hi,

I was wondering if you have been on a cruise before. If you have not, I would recommend bringing the dog once you get it. We just purchased a dog last month and am in process of getting it trained to be a service animal for both of our children. They both have PTSD and my son has some other issues, some similar to autism. A few times on the cruise, my son would get over stimulated or go to a dark spot in his mind. It took quite a bit of time to bring him back to the present. Having a dog trained to help would have been a blessing. Just my thoughts in case you have not experienced it before. Hope you get the dog soon!
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:46 PM   #45
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I saw a sign on secret deck seven aft that said "Service Dog Releif Area" so I assume there is a spot where they releave themselves.

If you don't beleive me, I can send you a picture. My son was sitting there until I pointed it out

paul
Yes, that's where it is. But they don't just go on the deck - when they have a dog on board, they put a kiddie pool full of sod for the dogs to use. You don't want the dog to associate the floor of the deck with a place to do their business! THAT would be bad!

From what I gather, as well, if the dog's owner has a verandah room, they will put one on the owner's verandah. No idea if that's instead of, or in addition to, the one on deck 7.
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