HUD asks FTC to investigate websites selling assistance animal documentation

Recently, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson wrote to Chairman of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Joseph J. Simons and Director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection Andrew Smith requesting that the FTC investigate certain websites that may be selling assistance animal documentation.

“These certificates are not an acceptable substitute for authentic documentation provided by medical professionals when appropriate,” said Secretary Carson. “These websites that sell assistance animal certificates are often also misleading by implying that they are affiliated with the federal government. Nothing could be further from the truth. Their goal is to convince individuals with disabilities that they need to spend hundreds of dollars on worthless documentation to keep their assistance animal in their homes.”

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Amid pit bull debate, service dogs prove life-changing for Sioux City veterans

“The biggest problem is you have people that do not have a trained dog. They’re taking untrained dogs out there and they’re causing problems,” Brodie said. “They’re saying they’re service dogs, but they’re not.”

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ESA Gator

People Are Taking Emotional Support Animals Everywhere. States Are Cracking Down.

More Americans are saying they need a variety of animals — dogs, ducks, even insects — for their mental health. But critics say many are really just pets that do not merit special status.
The vast majority of emotional support animals are dogs, but some Americans turn to a wide variety of other species. Wally the alligator was approved by his owner’s doctor in York, Pa., as an alternative to taking medication for depression.

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DOT Pit Bull Delta Ban

DOT disallows Delta ban on pit bulls as service animals

The DOT said in a guidance document on how it plans to enforce regulations of service animals in aircraft cabins that it “views a limitation based exclusively on breed of the service animal to not be allowed under its service animal regulation.”

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Department of Transportation Will Let Airlines Ban Emotional Support Snakes And Rodents

DOT listened to all of the stakeholders, reviewed the law, and laid out guidelines that will allow airlines to balance their operational needs, the comfort needs of all passengers, while ensuring that restrictions put in place don’t preclude having mental health needs met.

While that may not mean the end of passengers getting bitten by poorly controlled and vicious animals, it allows some controls to be put in place that may reduce the frequency and severity of incidents.

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Can a Service Dog Help with Your Anxiety?

Service dogs differ from regular pets. To be legally recognized as a service animal, these dogs are trained to perform tasks that can help someone with a disability. Depending on the person’s needs, this can mean anything from bringing a person their medication during times of crisis to finding help during a medical emergency.

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judge fake service dogs

5 Things to Consider Before Judging Fake Service Dogs

The more people learn about the invaluable work of service dogs, the more they develop good intentions for condemning the fakes.

By definition, a service dog is trained to perform tasks that relate to its handler’s disability, like alerting the handler to an upcoming seizure.

Listening to the common criticisms of fake service dogs, you’d think the problem is simple: Some dog owners are just inconsiderate.

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Chicago ESA pig

Chicago man continues legal fight to bring his ‘emotional support’ pig to parks

Mayle, who said in the lawsuit that he is diagnosed with bipolar disorder, said Chief Wiggum serves as an emotional support animal because he responds to attacks. Mayle also said the hog gives him massage therapy to help him with his anxiety and depression, according to his lawsuit.

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