I had to run into the post office today to mail a package. JuJu wasn't with me, and I didn't want to stand in the long line since I already had postage. The sign made me wonder, though, if the post office truly means only guide dogs for the blind are permitted inside or if the sign is misleading:
I found this on the website for the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA):
6. Q: My county health department has told me that only a guide dog has to be admitted. If I follow those regulations, am I violating the ADA?
A: Yes, if you refuse to admit any other type of service animal on the basis of local health department regulations or other state or local laws. The ADA provides greater protection for individuals with disabilities and so it takes priority over the local or state laws or regulations.
When a disability is not blatantly obvious like when a person is in a wheelchair or is blind, the waters get murky. I've been fortunate thus far that no one has questioned why I bring JuJu with me into stores. Whenever possible, such as when I know I'm going to my office or a yoga studio, I ask ahead of time to make sure the establishment is comfortable with me bringing her. I like to be as conscientious and considerate as I can be. When it's someplace new or impersonal, like the grocery store, I simply try to look more confident than I'm feeling so that JuJu will pick up on my confidence.
For more frequently asked questions regarding the ADA and service dogs, this is a great site to visit: https://www.ada.gov/archive/qasrvc.htm
JuJu is a seven-month-old standard poodle service dog with the most expressive eyes, gentle paws, and desire to please! She is a Freedom Fidos task-trained medical service dog, and she is still navigating that balance of teething puppydom and service dog superstar status!