Wednesday, March 22, 2017

This is Why I Don't Tell People at the Dog Park He is a Service Dog

Isaac got to play with a 9-month-old black lab puppy named Cricket today as well as with a German shepherd-lab mix named King. We went to a new dog park because it is near my doctor's office and I had an appointment and wanted to give Isaac time to run around and get tired before the appointment.

No one was there when we arrived but Isaac was happy to sniff all the new smells and pee on all the new places. Then Cricket arrived and they had fun chasing each other. Then King came and they are regulars are our regular dog park so it was a nice surprise to see them today. King and Isaac wrestled and Isaac made a few attempts to hump him but King refused to cooperate.

I was explaining to King's mom why Isaac and I were at this park instead of our regular park and she said "Oh, he goes to your appointment with you?" And I explained he is a service dog so he goes pretty much everywhere with me.

Then I followed her gaze over to where Isaac was attempting to hump her dog. When King refused to be humped, Isaac sat down and began licking himself. This is why I usually do not tell people at the dog park that Isaac is a service dog.

Friday, March 3, 2017

A Place I Can't Take My Service Dog

Tomorrow I am going on a tour of the Gentle Barn. If you're not familiar with the Gentle Barn, it's a rescue for farm animals and it's very awesome. On the tour, you get to cuddle cows and play with various rescued farm animals. I am super excited.

Because of the nature of the place, I called them to ask if it would be OK to bring my service dog or if it would be better not to bring him. Isaac would be fine there, I am sure, but I didn't know about all the farm animals there. The woman I spoke to told me everyone there loves dogs, they love all dogs, and she assured me that she was sure my service dog was very well behaved, but said that some of their rescued farm animals are not comfortable around dogs and so she thought it would be better not to bring him. 

I am fine with that. That's why I called to ask. And I understand how the presence of a SD might alter things at this type of organization and so it might be appropriate and legal for them to deny access. That's why I called to ask.  

I normally do not call places in advance to tell them I am bringing my service dog or to ask if I can bring him.  If it's a place the Department of Justice has already stated (in the Americans with Disabilities Act) that service dogs are allowed, I don't ask if I can bring him.  I don't need to.  But this is one of those exceptions.

Isaac will be spending the day at a nearby doggie daycare instead. I'm sure he will have a good time there and I cannot wait to cuddle some cows!