[This originally ran March 2.]
I dislike dogs. Many are ill-mannered louts. They smell because they won’t groom themselves. We often field complaints here at the palace about stupid canines barking in the middle of the night when a twig cracks. Chihuahuas are famous for it. Maybe Mr. Trump’s wall will fix that.
Worse yet, dogs are suck-ups, almost as bad as the average junior executive in Corporate America.
OK, rant over. Today’s post is about dogs I respect, the ones who help humans with disabilities. They are called service dogs. But some humans are taking advantage of laws that permit service animals in places like restaurants. From The Associated Press:
“People who falsely pass off their pets as service animals – think of the woman in Wisconsin last year who claimed the right to bring her kangaroo into McDonald’s – have frustrated people with legitimate needs to such an extent that legislators in several states are considering laws to restore the animals’ credibility.”
Florida has already taken a hard line, passing a law that makes misrepresenting a service animal a crime that might carry jail time.
Service dogs are not to be confused with emotional support animals, which provide comfort but in most cases are not formally trained. Businesses are not required to accommodate support animals, which can be of any species, including cats. (Feel free to think of me as your spirit animal.)
In Maine, a task force recommended weeding out fake service dogs with a state-issued card and an official emblem to be attached to the dog’s vest. Much as I hate the idea of more government intervention in any area, the backers of this proposal have a point. Call the bill something catchy like the Keeping Kangaroos Out of McDonald’s Act.