Service dog; a trained animal for the purpose of assisting with the life of a person with disabilities or who is medically compromised physically ,emotionally or mentally.
A service dog wears an identifying harness and or vest and the owner /handler carries identifying licensing or identification.
So folks here’s why I am writing today, I am sick and tired of stupidity. For 10 years before I was ever disabled I knew what a service dog was and I knew what it did and more importantly I knew they were a highly trained animal that was non aggressive.
Yesterday was the final straw in over 12 months of screaming running hiding climbing fences by uninformed dolts, who no matter how much you tell them he’s safe he’s not aggressive they run screaming.
If I had a dollar for every time a mother has picked up her children and ran screaming” no dog” or “no pero” or a woman who would rather step into fast dangerous oncoming traffic with her family and risk death than simply walk past a small obviously not yet full grown pup on a short controlling leash wear ins a bright red vest with the words SERVICE DOG an inch high in not one bur three places I would be a rich girl.
So back to yesterday, It was my baby’s birthday so I had a lot of organizing to do in a short time in the morning because we had a lunch date and it had to be perfect, now we live in a small out of date non wheelchair accessible studio that is long over due for renovation. So as I was rolling from the restaurant to the florist, I rolled past a kitchen renovation business with the words “WE SPECIALIZE IN DISABLED FRIENDLY RENOVATIONS” on the window so in I went. Just as Zeus became visible over a display an expensively dressed Latino woman in her fifties jumped on to the desk then jumped off and ran for the stock room some 30 feet away? Wtf so I asked what the problem was? to which she replied “the dog they’re monsters” she had a male counterpart and he said in a very calm “no it’s a service dog” as she was having her break down 3 other very wealthy looking couples left nervously, she said she had no idea what that was but the dog would attack she was sure.
Now to refurbish our apartment is at least 50 thousand dollars and this woman can sell 6 figure renovations deal with manhattans richest but a 24 inch high non aggressive dog sends her onto the very furniture she sells screaming like she saw a spider.
Folks don’t encourage your children to adopt your phobias, if you see a service dog with your children it’s a learning opportunity and don’t get me wrong there have been some parents who do ask if the kids can come close and ask me to explain what he does and I love it and the kids sometimes blow my mind by already knowing everything and telling their parents.
There is no logical reason for you to grab your children who are smiling and saying “look mommy puppy” and time and time again imprint your fear onto their emotional make up. just to be fair I must be clear I keep saying “she” or “mom” but I have had just as many grown men act just as ridiculously.
Before you jump on me about how I should understand phobias , the people with phobias I have met stand back as far as they can and simply stand motionless till I pass. the other people whether phobia or not act in a manner that is dangerous to themselves, me,Zeus and everyone around them . Zeus sat in a restaurant and quietly and went to sleep under the table as Ella and I celebrated her birthday. He does the same at my favorite coffee shop in the morning and when sids bicycles do repairs he sits and quietly watches them work on the chair. He goes rock wall climbing and is surrounded regularly by dozens of school children attending with their school.
When I am at the doctors he sits at the bottom of the examination table. Zeus has travelled the full extent of the new York subway system since he was 9 weeks old and never a problem and in september will travel Amtrak New York To Toronto.
Zeus is not the exception folks he is the rule if a service dog ever shows aggression I public he is bounced out of the program immediately . so next time you see a dog wearing a vest like the one above if you see it far enough in advance and you can’t get over your fear cross the road safely or step into a business but please lose the hysterics you are damaging your children and their ability to process fact from your fiction why would you want your children to grow up living with the horrible fear and stress that damages your life? It’s nothing short of child abuse.