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Frequently Asked Questions About Service and Emotional Support Dogs

Is there any application to fill out?

There are no applications to fill out and you do not need a doctor’s note.

What if someone has a fear or allergy of dogs, will my service dog be allowed?

Allergies and fear of dogs are not valid reasons for denying access or refusing service to people using service dogs. When a person who is allergic to dog dander and a person who uses a service dog must spend time in the same room or facility, for example, in a school classroom or at a homeless shelter, they both should be accommodated by assigning them, if possible, to different locations within the room or different rooms in the facility.

Who qualifies to have a Service Animal?

Service animals, as defined by American with Disabilities Act, are dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities. Now, what does that actually mean? We have broken down the definition into three parts to help better understand: disability, training, and tasks.

Disability: An individual with a disability is defined by the ADA as a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a person who has a history or record of such an impairment, or a person who is perceived by others as having such an impairment.

According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), over 1 out of 4 (26% ~ 61 million) of adults in the United States have some type of disability who may benefit from the assistance of a Service Animal.

Training: Service animals must always have basic obedience training. They should always behave in public and be under the control of the handler. In addition to the basic obedience training, a service animal must be trained (either by a professional trainer or the handler themselves) to perform a task, or an act of “service”, directly related to the handler’s disability.

Tasks: The task(s) a service animal performs for its handler must be directly related to the disability.

In conclusion, if you have a dog that has been trained (either by yourself or a professional) to provide assistance for your disability, then you may qualify to have a service animal.

Can I be asked to leave if my service dog is being disruptive?

Yes. A person with a disability cannot be asked to remove his service dog from the premises unless: (1) the dog is out of control and the handler does not take effective action to control it or (2) the dog is not housebroken. When there is a legitimate reason to ask that a service dog be removed, staff must offer the person with the disability the opportunity to obtain goods or services without the animal’s presence.

What breed of dog can be considered a service dog?

Under ADA law any breed of dog can be considered a service dog.

Does my service dog have to be on a leash?

Under the ADA, service dogs must be harnessed, leashed, or tethered, unless these devices interfere with the service dog’s work or the individual’s disability prevents using these devices. In that case, the individual must maintain control of the animal through voice, signal, or other effective controls.

Do I have to pay any extra fees?

No. No businesses, apartments or airlines can charge you extra fees in order to have your service dog by your side.

What do I do if I am refused entry or questioned by a business?

There are only two questions you may be asked regarding your service dog: 1) is the dog a service dog required because of a disability, and 2) what work or task has the dog been trained to perform. Staff cannot ask about the person’s disability, require medical documentation, require a special identification card or training documentation for the dog, or ask that the dog demonstrate its ability to perform the work or task.

Is PTSD covered?

Yes, PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) is covered under ADA Laws and as long as your service dog is able to calm you during an anxiety attack then he/she is considered a service dog.

Are businesses allowed to question me or refuse to give me service?

No. Under the ADA, you are allowed to take your service dog virtually anywhere you are allowed to go. Your dog is not considered a “pet”. You are allowed to have your service dog with you in your apartment, restaurants, beaches, airplanes, etc., all without having to pay any extra fees or deposits.

Can I take my service dog anywhere?

Once your dog is considered a service dog you can take them with you anywhere the public has access to as long as they are not misbehaving.

Benefits of a Service Animal?
  • Can go anywhere public has access
  • No county licensing fees
  • Tax deductible
  • Providing assistance to disabled handler
  • Improving the handler’s self-esteem
  • A Greater Feeling of Independence
  • Flies with handler in cabin for free
  • Lives with handler in housing for free
  • Stays with handler in hotel for free
Do I need a doctor’s letter for my Service Animal?

No. You may not be asked for any medical documentation or to disclose your disability. A doctor’s letter may only be requested for an Emotional Support Animal (link to ESA).

When will I receive my registration?

Your physical kit (certificate, ID card, tag, collar, leash, vest, if ordered) will arrive in 3-7 business days with our free shipping. We also offer the following expedited shipping options:

$9 Priority (2-3 business days) $45 Express (1-2 business days)

In a rush to receive your certificate and ID cards with your registration? You may add your electronic copies to any kit to receive your digital certificate and ID card via email in less than 24 hours.

Is this legal?

Service Animals are protected under federal law by the Americans with Disability Act (ADA), which protects the handler’s rights to have their service animal accompany them anywhere the general public has access.

Some State and local laws also define service animal more broadly than the ADA does. Information about such laws can be obtained from the State attorney general’s office.

What information may be asked of me for proof of my Service Animal?

When it is not obvious what service an animal provides, only limited inquiries are allowed. Staff may ask two questions:

  • Is the dog a service animal required because of a disability, and
  • What work or task has the dog been trained to perform.

Staff cannot ask about the person’s disability, require medical documentation, require a special identification card or training documentation for the dog, or ask that the dog demonstrate its ability to perform the work or task. Doing so may be in violation of federal law.

Individuals who believe that they have been illegally denied access or service because they use service animals may file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Justice. Individuals also have the right to file a private lawsuit in Federal court charging the entity with discrimination under the ADA.

What is an emotional support dog?

An emotional support dog is a dog that provides comfort and support in forms of affection and companionship for an individual suffering from various mental and emotional conditions. An emotional support dog is not required to perform any specific tasks for disability like service dogs are. There are meant solely for emotional stability and unconditional love.

What are some of the disabilities that qualify me for an emotional support dog?

Anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder/mood disorder, panic attacks, fear/phobias and other psychological and emotional conditions.

Can I have an emotional support dog?

If you have a disability (a person who suffers from emotional or psychological conditions) then you are entitled to an emotional support dog.

Will I need a doctor’s note?

Federal law requires individuals with an Emotional Support Dog to provide a valid letter (dated within the past 12 months) from a doctor or mental health professional recommending the use of their animal. This letter may be requested from your building manager/landlord or airline personnel.

If you do not have a letter we can assign you to one of our licensed providers in your state and they will provide you signed housing and airline authorization letters and forms within 1 day after you submit your online questionnaire.

What kind of training does my dog need to go through in order to be considered an emotional support dog?

There is no specific training that your dog needs to go through in order to be considered an emotional support dog. Keep in mind that your dog needs to be trained to behave properly in public settings.

Do I need to notify my airline that I’m bringing an emotional support dog on board?

Yes, please notify your airline at least 48 hours prior to boarding so they can accommodate and arrange seats for you and your emotional support dog.

My landlord says, “NO PETS ALLOWED”; can I have my emotional support dog with me?

Once your dog is considered an emotional support dog he or she can stay with you at your residence even if they do not allow pets.

Benefits of an Emotional Support Animal?
  • Comforting the handler with their presence
  • Providing a sense of focus and purpose in its handler
  • Improving the handler’s self-esteem
  • Reducing stress
  • Flies with handler in cabin for free
  • Lives with handler in housing for free
What information may be asked of me for proof of my Emotional Support Animal?

Airline personnel and/or building manager/landlords may ask for a note, written by a doctor or mental health professional, recommending the use of an Emotional Support Animal (SAMPLE). It may be from your physician, psychiatrist, therapist, or licensed clinical social worker (LCSW). To be valid, the letter must be current (dated within the past 12 months) and updated annually.

All of our kits have the option of adding the Travel Bundle and/or the Housing Bundle, which includes a signed letter from a licensed practitioner after an online evaluation.

Please do note that while emotional support animals do not require specific training for one’s disability, they must have basic obedience training and not misbehave in public.

I don’t have a doctor’s letter. Is that something you provide?

We offer two different bundle add-ons with our Emotional Support Animal kits:

ESA Travel Bundle ESA Housing Bundle

Housing providers and airlines require the letters to be designated specifically for living or flying. If you wish to receive a letter for both, you may add both to your kit, in which two separate letters will be issued.

Each bundle includes an online evaluation by a licensed practitioner, in which you will receive your signed letter recommending the use of an Emotional Support Animal, if approved.

When will I receive my registration?

Once your request has been reviewed by a licensed practitioner and approved, you will receive your signed letter in one business day. Your physical kit (certificate, ID card, tag, collar, leash, vest, if ordered) will arrive in 3-7 business days with our free shipping.

$9 Priority (2-3 business days) $45 Express (1-2 business days)

In a rush to receive your certificate and ID cards with your registration? You may add your electronic copies to any kit to receive your digital certificate and ID card via email in less than 24 hours.

Is this legal?

Emotional Support Animals are protected under federal law by the Fair Housing Amendment Act (FHAA) and the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA), which protects the handler’s rights in housing and air travel, respectively.

Is this all I need?

Your registration and kit include all items required to fly and/or live with your Emotional Support Animal.

My landlord is requesting their own specific forms be signed for my Emotional Support Animal. Do you assist me with those?

Yes. By adding the ESA Housing Bundle to your kit, you will have access to your own concierge that will assist you with all forms for your Emotional Support Animal for no additional cost.

I have heard some airlines require their own forms. Do you also provide them?

Yes. We have the required forms for all major airlines, which is included with our ESA Travel Bundle.

Can I make my dog a therapy dog?

In order to make your dog a therapy dog, it should have a calm demeanor and be well-trained. Certain types of breeds may be better suited to be therapy dogs since their temperaments make them better around other people. Ultimately, the staff at each facility you visit will determine if they would like to grant your therapy dog access or not, so it is important that your therapy dog does not cause any issues.

Can I take my therapy dog to all kinds of businesses, such as restaurants and grocery stores?

Therapy dogs are usually taken to facilities such as hospitals and nursing homes, but other types of places may be happy to allow you to bring your therapy dog with you. Contact them and let them know that you would like to bring your therapy dog with you so that you don’t have any issues when arriving to the location.

Does my therapy dog have to be trained to help a certain kind of disability?

No, your therapy dog does not have to be trained to perform certain tasks for a disability. Service dogs are trained to do so, but therapy dogs are only used to provide comfort and support to others, and usually not to a specific person.

What information is shown on the ID card?

The information provided on our certificate and ID cards are: Service dog, emotional support dog, or therapy dog’s name and registration number with optional picture (ID card only), and service dog, emotional support dog, or therapy dog’s handler.

What’s the purpose of the certificate and the ID card?

The purpose of the ID kit and vest is so others are aware of the fact that the dog is a service dog or emotional support dog. It is to drive awareness to those around you since people often have a difficult time without the vest and ID kit. Some businesses, such as airlines, will ask that the dog be wearing a clearly-marked vest or have some form of identification card for the dog.

What is the return policy on your products?

If you order a vest for your dog and it doesn’t fit well, we’ll be happy to exchange it for a better size. Just contact us and we will walk you through the exchange process. Please contact us immediately if you wish to do so. Only one exchange is permitted per vest order and must be within 15 days of placing your order. There are no refunds on the certificate and identification cards, as they are printed and shipped promptly after your order is placed.

How long until I receive my kit?

You will receive your kit within 3-7 business days with our free shipping. You also have the option of expediting the shipping process during the checkout page if you need your kit sooner.

  • Express Shipping (1-2 Business days)
  • Priority Shipping (2-3 Business days)

We also have the option for electronic copies, which you will receive your ID card and certificate via Email within 24 hours.

How long does it take to receive my electronic copies?

Your electronic copies will be sent via email within 24 hours of placing your order.