Vague laws on service dogs in restaurants - WFLA News Channel 8

Vague laws on service dogs in restaurants

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CLEARWATER, FL (WFLA) - A veteran and his wife were upset after they were escorted from a Clearwater restaurant by police. 

Dr. Richard Davis and his wife Lior Sher claim they were escorted from Maggie Mae's restaurant in Sand Key because of their service dogs and that the restaurant and police violated federal laws.

More: Clearwater couple escorted from restaurant because of service dogs

So what are the laws when it comes to service dogs in restaurants? 

When Susan Wilburn lost her vision, her dog Carson found her path. Carson wears tags showing he's a service dog, and Wilburn carries an ID in her wallet. But what about pups without papers?

8 On Your Side investigated and it turns out the Americans with Disabilities Act is quite vague. But there are two questions restaurants are allowed to ask: Is your service dog required because of a disability? And, what task has your dog been trained to perform? Patrons must provide answers or they may be asked to leave.

Also, emotional support dogs are not recognized by the Americans with Disabilities Act.

"More and more people travel with service dogs and also unfortunately more people travel with dogs that are not legitimate service dogs, and there's a lot of confusion about which dogs are granted access," Wilburn says.

Experts warns not to buy into online services offering to "certify your dog" for a low price. People who would like to get their dogs the proper paperwork should look for an accredited organization.

Copyright 2014 WFLA. All rights reserved.


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