As a very active team Shiloh and I work diligently to present our community with an image of a happy, reasonable, and responsible team and recently our efforts have been paying off since people see us (all right me) as a credible resource for their questions.
Shiloh, myself, my roommate, and her Guide Dog Cammy went into a local bookstore to sell some books we no longer wanted for a little cash. As I entered the store I was pleased to discover one of our dog park friends worked there and that her little Boston Terrier, Little D, served as shop dog. She knew that our girls were on duty and quickly moved Little D behind the counter so that we could simply go about our business. (Not that our girls couldn't work with him around, it just gave her peace of mind that he wouldn't pester us.) As we finished our business she asked if she could ask us a question about our dogs. She wanted to know if service dogs had to wear harnesses, or vests when out in public. Not wanting to increase confusion or spread misinformation-nevermind how simple it is to dress one's service dog so people are not always pestering you about bringing THAT DOG in here- we told her no the law doesn't require that service dogs wear any kind of special harness of vest. However, we went on to say that most people will since it is so simple to do and cuts down on people hassling them. She asked because a lady had come into the store with a dog who wasn't dressed and not the best behaved and when she asked the lady about the dog the lady got offended saying it was a service dog. We also told her the questions that the DOJ has said businesses can ask. She thanked us and said she looked forward to seeing us again.
How about it readers (Those who are partnered with SDs) do you dress your service dog? Why or why not? leave a comment and tell others and me what you think. Those readers not partnered with service dogs how do you feel about harnesses and vests for service dogs?
We have a housekeeper who comes every couple of weeks to help with the deeper cleaning that neight myself nor my roommate can do very well and as I sat relaxing one evening I her voice come over the answering machine wondering if I might be able to give her some resources on service dogs who do seizure response, since she know that is what Einstein does, for a friend of hers who has epilepsy and is now living alone for the first time in years as her son just moved out. When she came over later that week I gave her the websites for ADI and IAADP to share with her friend since her friend is very new to the idea of a service dog. I was happy to pass on credible sources of information for her friend, since I know there are a lot of websites out there full of misinformation.