My Service Dog, Jade

My Service Dog, Jade

Jade at 11 weeks, the day I brought her home.
Moved into pre certification stage! Yay!

videoLearning to open/close the sliding door.

videoLearning open/close the fridge.

videoLearning "hold it."

Helping with the laundry

Hard at work.

Playtime at the park....All work and no play....

Waiting in security line at the airport.

Getting used to the new harness.

Getting settled on the plane.

Waiting at the airport.


  1. I leased a condo apartment to a couple. after they moved in, i discovered they had a small chihauhua. the condo building does not allow pets, and the building is pressuring me to get rid of the dog. the tenant produced one of those id cards purchased on the internet, saying the dog is a service animal. the dog has no vest, collar or tag saying it is a service dog. i asked the tenant how this dog qualifies as a service dog. the owner said that 'I'm not supposed to tell, but it is for my depression'. the dog isn't trained enough to come when his name is called. my question is twofold: are people with non-physical disabilities allowed service dogs? is the tenant breaking any law by holding this dog out as a service dog when it clearly has not been tested and does not show have any outward symbol of a service dog.

    1. This is a difficult situation, Pepper. I certainly sympathize with your position here. It's very hard, if not impossible to make someone prove that their dog is a "service dog." In fact, it's actually against Federal Law to make one prove their dog is a service dog; however, there are some things I can help you with here, if you'd like. There is a big difference between a Service Dog and an Emotional Support Animal (ESA).
      A true Service Dog is individually trained to perform specific tasks to assist the disabled person....for example, picking up things they drop, opening/closing doors, bracing for mobility, etc. Yes, there are service dogs specially trained for disabled people with psychiatric disabilities only, like depression or PTSD; however, these dogs are also specially trained to perform specific tasks....for example, a PTSD trained service dog might help the handler find the exit in a building if they become anxious....or might be trained to sit backwards while the handler waits in a line to "watch the handler's back" and alert them if someone gets too close.....the dog might be trained to force the handler to get up out of a chair and go for a walk or alert them to take their medication.....however, if the dog's presence is enough to make the handler feel better, and isn't trained to do any specific tasks, like the one you speak of seems to be, then it would be considered an Emotional Support Animal. An ESA simply makes the handler feel better by its mere presence and isn't trained to perform any specific tasks. So just having the dog "makes me feel better because I"m depressed," means that it is an Emotional Support Animal, and not a Service Dog.
      Nevertheless, there are also housing rules about Emotional Support Animals and whether they are allowed by law to be present in housing that has generally has a "no pets" policy. So, even though you have a "no pets" policy in your building, if this person has an Emotional Support Animal, then it must be allowed to stay for the disability of the handler; however, I am not sure that merely having an i.d. for the dog is enough. I do believe you may ask the handler to have doctor documentation that states the dog is specifically for his/her depression, and the dog is necessary for the disability of the handler....I may be wrong about that, but you can check to make sure by viewing the ADA rules and regulations.....the Fair Housing Act states the absolute rules about Emotional Support Animals being allowed in certain types of housing situations, and you can check there online to be sure...

      Please keep me posted on this....I'm curious to how this situation turns out. Thanks for writing in.