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.

Walmart No pets No ESAs

Walmart bites back at ’emotional support animals’

Walmart, the nation’s No. 1 retailer, is tightening the leash on “comfort and emotional support animals.”

Throughout Brevard County, and the rest of the United States, Walmart is adding prominent signage saying “Service animals welcome. No Pets.”


Despite the popularity of emotional support animals, experts say there’s little evidence they work

“We just don’t know whether they work or how much they work,” said Molly Crossman, a Yale University researcher who studies human and animal interactions.

There are few studies that examine emotional support animals, and the conclusions of these studies are mixed, she said. Also, the studies focus on dogs or horses, not other species. In her work, Crossman has found little evidence that animals can relieve anxiety or stress.

Still, those who work with animals designed to bring comfort to people struggling with mental health obstacles say people feel better after interacting with animals.


Collared: New laws crack down on fake service dogs

Last month, Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton, a Democrat, signed into law a bill making it illegal for people to misrepresent their pets as service animals, under which pet-loving perps are subject to a $100 fine and a misdemeanor charge. Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, a Republican, signed a nearly identical bill, under which those “fraudulently misrepresent” service animal can be fined $250.