This is Alfie, a Golden-Doodle service dog belonging to the presenter at an afternoon conference I attended today for some Continuing Education Units. It was titled, “Service Dogs for Veterans” but it cast a wider net in that he explained a great deal about Service Dogs and the Americans with Disabilities Act.
It accomplished my main goal, which was to understand if and what the difference is between a Service Dog and an emotional assistance animal. In Washington, there is very much a difference. It has to do with public access. A Service Dog has public access, which means it can go anywhere the handler can go: restaurant, grocery store, medical clinic, library, etc. An emotional assistance animal can not. And it is a felony to try to pass off an emotional assistance animal, or a pet, as a Service Dog. There is a lot more information on this but I will stop with that.