Saturday, July 16, 2022



Volume #07162022-2100                              July 16, 2022


More tricksters are ‘gaming the system’ because they can.

It’s a sad tale when someone walks into a grocery store, road-kill in tow, and claims their pet as a ‘Service Animal’.  It’s even sadder when their pet sports a ‘Service Animal’ vest, making it look all the more suspicious.  The saddest thing of all is that these cheats, as they continue to game the system, are diminishing the stature, standing, and reputation of genuine service dogs and their owners.

When you ask these many and sundry liars, “Is this a trained service animal?  Without missing a beat they reply, “Yes, it is.  Having no moral rudder or conscience they believe that anything is ‘okay’ as long as they don’t get caught.  So very sad … So very sad indeed.

According to leading Service Dog Trainer, Jerry S. Bruckwalter, “Some folks will say that theirs is a service animal, claiming to have trained it themselves.  Nothing could be further from the truth, because it’s virtually impossible to train and intern your own service dog.  That’s not how it works!


“… It’s impossible to train your own service dog.”


Unfortunately, the latest revisions of the ADA [Americans with Disabilities Act] have widened this loophole, already wider than the Grand Canyon, making it virtually impossible to tell service animals from pets.  No longer banning or preferring certain breeds, the ADA allows virtually any dog breed, size, or type to be claimed as a ‘Service Animal’.  Fortunately, the ADA still refuses to recognize ‘comfort’ and ‘companion’ animals.

There is still a way to spot these fraudulent tricksters with the moral conscience of Attila the Hun.  They can’t escape the reality of their dogs’ behaviour as an identifying flag for real and fake service animals.

Look for these signs to betray a fake service animal:

● Along with performing at least one specific task, on cue, which allows the human to live more independently, a Service Dog must demonstrate certain public skills:

● Heeling in crowds, following closely with its master at all times, especially in crowds.

● Ignoring people and dogs, not being frightened by the sudden appearance of people, animals, or objects near them.  The ability to ‘tune out’ and virtually ignore crowds and otherwise distracting objects is a key characteristic and trained behaviour of a service dog.

● Not bothered by noises. Service Dogs should be what trainers call “bomb proof”.  This means they take in stride all sorts of distractions and startling events while remaining focused on their handler and ready to do their job.

See this link:,special%20dog%20to%20be%20a%20good%20Service%20Dog.

Now, looking for these qualities in an animal will help to quickly identify a fake service animal.  Now, as easy as it is to pick out a bogus service mutt, there is still another obstacle to overcome;  That is the fact that there are absolutely no federal criteria for what does and does not make an animal a service animal.

With this lack of legislation , qualification, and registration, bogus websites have cropped up everywhere, often with real sounding names such as,,, and are just the tip of the iceberg of dirty-tricks.  Some of these sites freely toss around the words ‘official’ and ‘authorized’ to further confuse the ignorant or enable the complicit.

These and may others offer you a fast track to ‘registration and qualification’ of your animal.  Just log on, sign up, pay your money, and viola!  In a few days you get your dog’s ID card and papers in the mail.  Official looking but lacking any substance, these are used by the ignorant and the complicit to pass off their pets as service animals.

Please remember that a service animal is remarkable, and has the characteristics and training that pets simply do not have.  Rover may be a great pet, and great company too, but that doesn’t mean he’s a service dog.

On average it costs $32,000 to train a service dog.  They are professionally trained, tested, and interned before being released to specific owners and trained with those owners during a ‘break-in’ period often called ‘internship’.

I love dogs, and have owned a few in the past.  I have always trained my dogs to heel when commanded to, stay when told to, and not tear the house up when I am gone.  I have never felt the need to drag Fido around with me everywhere I have gone.  I’ve had very well behaved animals.  However, they were never sufficiently trained and interned as to be service dogs.






There is a difference people!  In some states such as Alabama there are now laws on the books posing fines for those who obviously game the system.  More and more states are signing on with their own ‘Fake Service Dog’ legislation.  It can’t come too soon.

I’m Max, and that’s the way I see it!

P.S. There are far too many cases of service dog fraud causing untold damage to those who need real service animals.  Just because you can't leave your home without Fido does not mean your mutt is a qualified service animal.  In fact, there is no such thing as a 'Companion' or 'Support' animal ... not according to the ADA [Americans with Disabilities Act].

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