This is another reason why people with fake service dogs need to STOP !
Yesterday my daughter and I went to a restaurant with our real/actual service dog that is trained and is even licensed by our county’s sheriff department as a service dog.
We wait to be seated and the hostess asks if it’s a service dog. Obviously it is since it’s in a huge brightly colored marked vest which isn’t even required by ADA law. She then tells us we have to eat outside. (First violation of ADA law).
We sit outside on the deck and a waitress comes over and demands to see “papers” on service dog who is lying silently as trained under the table.
I calmly and politely explain to the misinformed waitress that there are no “papers” on a service dog.
She argues and says they have to be certified with papers. I educate her that I have personally trained over 55 service animals and delivered them all over the US and that by federal law there are no papers required and any entity that offers “papers” or “registration” is a scam. She says “Well, he’s so badly behaved that I need to see something.” Really? He’s lying silently under the table as trained, with his head on his paws, in a perfect ‘down stay’ and ‘under’ command, not moving a muscle. When we entered the establishment he sat at my daughter’s side, as trained, in a perfect sit/stay.
I explain that I’ve ran a non-profit training and placing life saving service dogs, coached hundreds of disabled individuals on how to train their own, and that her information is incorrect and in violation of ADA laws.
I am recording this now as she’s belligerent and loud and tells me not to shout at her when I’m speaking in a calm and quiet voice responding to her questions.
I ask to speak to the manager and she makes some rude comments so now everyone is staring on the deck and she leaves the table to get the manager.
Manager comes over and is very nice and knows the laws. I tell her what happened. She apologizes for her ignorant staff and we have a pleasant conversation. I explain to her that now that everyone is staring at us and the waitress and hostess have been so rude and hateful that I don’t feel comfortable staying to eat with my daughter.
She is gracious and profusely apologizes which I tell her three times I appreciate. She says many people have brought fake service dogs recently that her staff are all gun shy although it’s no excuse for how they treated us and that they were supposedly trained in ADA law but didn’t handle it correctly so she apologizes for the fourth time with tears in her eyes.
I shake her hand and tell her to have a good afternoon. We leave.
On the way out there is a sign we see in the parking lot stating that it’s a federal crime to fake a service dog. Yes it is, and it’s a federal crime to treat a disabled person with a service dog the way they did also.