Service animal or pet? When Rover comes to work

May 14, 2017 0 COMMENTS

by Erica E. Flores

For decades, service animals were used almost exclusively to assist the blind and, in that role, were aptly known simply as guide dogs or seeing-eye dogs. But times have changed. Today, dogs and other service animals—including monkeys, parrots, and miniature horses—are being trained to provide a remarkable variety of services to individuals with disabilities. They can alert the hearing impaired to household and environmental sounds, warn epileptics of oncoming seizures, calm children and adults with autism, signal diabetics of changes in their insulin levels, and, increasingly, provide comfort and companionship to people with a wide range of mental and emotional disabilities, including depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and post- traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). What does that mean for employers?   Pit Bull Wearing Service Dog Vest

Emotional support animals?

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Who let the dogs out?

October 14, 2012 0 COMMENTS

by J. David Kutch

A Palm Beach State College (PBSC) student received permission from the school to use a service dog trained to help her deal with the effects of her psychiatric disorders. However, she failed her classes and was escorted off the campus at times, apparently because two offices at the school had different positions on allowing the dog in class. Sick of the song and dance, the student ended up in court asking for permission to continue bringing her service dog to class. She won.

Although this case didn’t involve a dispute between an employer and employee, the court’s decision has some implications for your compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). It’s important to note that the accommodation would likely be the same in an employment case.

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