Isis Bridal Tells Woman With MS To Get Out

Ooo, you nasty! With your service animal! Get out of here! That’s the new informal slogan of Isis Bridal & Formal in Dallas after news broke that they kicked out a 62-year-old grandmother with multiple sclerosis, because they were worried her service dog would get service dog cooties all over the dresses.

The company has since indirectly apologized to the woman via a letter to the news station that broke the story (after first refusing to comment on the allegation at all). In the letter, the store’s owner assures the public that they welcome service animals “when they are leashed and well controlled so that our pretty wedding dresses and accessories are kept in good condition for customers.” There’s no mention of whether the woman’s dog was leashed or not, although the idea of a rambunctious service dog who doesn’t mind is just funny.

“Bridal store turns away woman with MS “ [WFAA-TV] (Thanks to Beau!)
(Photo: tom.arthur)

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  1. bairdwallace says:

    “the idea of a rambunctious service dog who doesn’t mind is just funny”

    Doesn’t mind what? Is this a typo, or am I not getting something? Damnit, now I feel foolish.

    • nakedscience says:

      @bairdwallace: I think they mean “doesn’t mind” as in … “you better mind me, son!”

    • Rachacha says:

      @bairdwallace: “Mind” in this case is “Behave” or “Listen to its master”

    • Chris Walters says:

      @bairdwallace: [shrug] maybe it’s a Southern thing? “Mind” as in “obey.” I’m from Texas and everyone there would know immediately what I meant. In light of where this story takes place, I think I’ll leave it as “mind” to give it some regional flavor.

    • jmurphy42 says:

      @bairdwallace: It may be more common in the south, but I’m from Chicago and understood it just fine. It’s a pretty common idiom.

      • b.k. says:

        One of my southern friends has never heard the term “walkin’ around money,” and I always thought that was a southern phrase, so I have no idea where anything comes from anymore, just that I heard it first from my grandmother.

        She also likes to have her picture made and go to the shows.

    • BEERxTaco says:

      @bairdwallace: Mind the gap!

    • PsiCop says:

      @bairdwallace: It’s an old expression. “Mind what I say!” is something I heard — as a kid — from my parents. It’s related to “minding one’s manners.” And so on.

      Nevertheless — as familiar as I am with this phrase — it caught me briefly when I read it, too. Maybe it’s one of those things that’s tougher to discern in writing, as opposed to hearing it?

  2. MaxSmart32 says:

    Welcome to the little thing called discrimination…sheesh.

    People are idiots, plain and simple.

    • Canino says:

      @MaxSmart32: And another thing called the ADA.

      • lulfas says:

        @Canino: Your disability doesn’t give you the right to ruin someone’s stuff.

        • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

          @lulfas: been a bridesmaid several times so i have been in plenty of bridal stores. a service dog isn’t the biggest issue the dresses on the racks have. sticky child fingers, bride-to-be’s who have just been in the food court [i have personally witnessed a bride eating in the group dressing room and then wiping her hands on the train of the sample dress she was trying on.] almost every sample wedding dress i have seen has shoe prints on the hem, ripped seams and zippers, etc.
          as the bridesmaid/maid of honor it’s always been my job to bring binder clips and rubber bands to help the bride try on the dress to make it – those dresses are always stained, soiled, ripped and ravaged. a little dog hair isn’t going to matter

        • tbax929 says:

          @lulfas:
          Your not having a disability doesn’t give you the right to infringe on the rights of someone who has one.

        • eakwave1 says:

          @lulfas: Who said anyone was ruining anything? It’s a trained service animal for heaven’s sake.

        • Trai_Dep says:

          @lulfas: “Your disability doesn’t give you the right to ruin someone’s stuff.”

          It does if you can turn a blind eye to it.

          • LadySiren is murdering her kids with HFCS and processed cheese says:

            @Trai_Dep: Oh, you are bad! It still made me laugh just a little, though.

        • The Porkchop Express says:

          @lulfas: did it ruin something? I’ll admit that I didn’t rtfa but….

    • Traveshamockery says:

      @MaxSmart32: This is why service animals should be cross trained as attack dogs.

  3. Tmoney02 says:

    I am normally always on the side of the service animals and their owners but you may have found the one case I can’t support.

    If there are any dresses not in protective plastic (and there always would be display dresses), and the dog is shedding (which it probably is this time of year) that could be a lot of pure white expensive dresses with dog hair all over them due to the dog just brushing against them as he walks the aisles.

    It could become a big (possibly expensive) mess out of no one’s fault other than white wedding dresses are inherently incompatible with shedding dogs. The dog could be perfectly behaved and leashed and still pose a problem to the merchandise.

    • Radi0logy says:

      @Tmoney02: Except that theres no such thing as a bride that buys a dress off the rack (probably worn by a number of brides-to-be) without having it tailored and dry-cleaned first. When my fiancee bought her wedding dress, some of the other dresses literally had dirt and grime around the hems, rips, tears and all sorts of other things because of how often they had been tried on. I doubt a dozen or so loose dog hairs will cost this prissy lady any sales.

    • badhatharry says:

      @Tmoney02: So get a lint brush. Steaming and brushing the dresses seems like normal maintenance to me.

    • Anonymous says:

      @Tmoney02: Wedding dresses at bridal shops are generally samples only–the “real” dress is then ordered and kept in a plastic garment bag once it arrives. A little bit of dog hair is not going to ruin the effect of trying on a sample wedding dress any more than lipstick smudges and armpit sweat stains would.

    • bohemian says:

      @Tmoney02: Most of these stores also have a large open area with seating. If the customer was sitting in that area the dog vs. the dresses is not an issue.

    • angrychicken says:

      @Tmoney02: Those dresses are tried on again and again by patrons before one is ordered specifically for the bride. Unless you’re going to a huge chain like David’s Bridals, she’s not buying one of the off the rack dresses.

      • Piri says:

        @angrychicken: Even at David’s Bridal, when you buy one of their rack dresses they INCLUDE a single drycleaning and pressing in the price of the dress (atleast for wedding dresses, I don’t know if Prom gowns have different rules)

        I will also say I have NEVER seen a display dress that didn’t have a makeup stain around the neck or bust from multiple women pulling it over their head. Some dog hair is not a concern.

    • conquestofbread says:

      @Tmoney02:

      I am pretty sure that it doesn’t matter what the nature of the business is with a service animal, at least in respect to the Americans with Disabilities Act.

      • ztoop says:

        @conquestofbread:

        A store should have aisles wide enough for not only a service dog but also a wheelchair. So, if they overstock their products and can’t accommodate someone with special needs, they should find a way (i.e. bring the dresses to the customers.). This is nothing that can’t be overcome with customer service.

      • Tmoney02 says:

        @conquestofbread: That wasn’t my point but I also believe it is almost impossible to write a law which has unforseen circumstances or unintendend consequences. I was thinking that perhaps I had finally come upon the exception to the rule.

        Hmmm…. I agree with everyone if this was an upscale place were you try on samples then order your dress but I am assuming that this was a david bridals type place were you grab dresses off the rack and buy those actual dresses. Also their wouldn’t be the wide open seating and lots of room that a more upscale sample store would have. (or is there I admittedly have never been in a david’s bridal)

        But Radi0logy makes a good point that even those dresses do get damaged/need a bit of mending and would be cleaned after purchase. Still I could see as the owner wanting to prevent as much damage(and maintaining as much value) to the merchandise as possible. Some customers may put up with dirt from others trying on the dress but turn their nose up at animal hair even if its easily cleaned off. That’s a lost sale.

        Depending on how much the women travels with her dog up and down narrow racks and the state of shedding, badhatharry’s suggestion to just get a lint brush would be a vast oversimplification of tracking down all the dresses brushed against by the dog and getting all the hair off. I have a cat that sheds like crazy and its hard enough to get all the hair off colored clothes let alone pure large pure white dresses.

        All in all I’m 99% sure I’m on the ladies side, but it would help If I could see the store interior and its layout. I am now more trying to think of a (most likely hypothetical) situation where this would be a legitimate claim – aka playing devils advocate.

        • raygun21 says:

          @Tmoney02: Your mistaken assumption is that there should or can be a situation where this is legitimate. In fact, it seems a lot of your “devil’s advocacy” is based on nothing but assumptions.

          So I’ll just assume you know nothing and should be ignored at this point.

          • Tmoney02 says:

            @raygun21:yikes, you need to lighten up. Its the end of the work day. You keep being so uptight and your going to blow a gasket soon.

            Yes, a lot of my writing on this is conjecture and assumptions….because there isn’t a lot of information available. I could say exactly the same about your assumptions on this situation.

            I didn’t realize laws were impossible to question or find flaws in. I guess all laws are perfect and can never be improved on or have unintended consequences. Man we need to give our politicians raises for being so good at their jobs!

            I was merely trying to raise attention that the ADA law may prove to be very costly to this owner. That doesn’t mean the owner doesn’t have to follow it , but that also doesn’t mean we shouldn’t look at this situation and see if an exception to the law is needed.

            Should the owner of the store be happy and willing to suffer extra time and labor costs due to this women’s visit? Usually allowing service pets is a minimal inconvenience / cost. In this particular situation it could be a large inconvenience and cost.

            This is what I am interested in, is there a chance somehow the owner could have suffered large time and labor costs and if so should the owner be expected to just eat these costs? Is there ever an acceptable exception to the ADA?

            Knee jerk reactions to it being the law and to having to follow it is not something that really applies to this thread but thanks for telling me and others what we all know!

            • badhatharry says:

              @Tmoney02: Brushing the dresses isn’t an oversimplification, it’s part of the cost of doing business. And if you’re cleaning pet hair off, chances are it’s going to be on the part below the knee that is sticking out into the aisle. They don’t have to brush down the entire garment.

            • exconsumer9 says:

              @Tmoney02: No, I don’t think there is. The whole point of ADA is that the costs involved with accommodating the disabled are considered the cost of doing business. And besides, services animals are the most eerily calm animals on the planet. Have you ever tried to get one riled up? They calmly follow or lead their owner, and laydown underneath their chair once they sit down. That’s it. The idea that the dog would have run around or shed excessively over many dresses does not hold. Sure it may have shed, along the path it walked, whatever it may have brushed up against, and the spot where it lay down. It would have been a finite mess to clean up.

        • HogwartsAlum says:

          @Tmoney02:

          Then you would have to ban people with food, people wearing lipstick, people wearing shoes, people with small sticky-fingered children…(see all the posts above where commenters pointed out that the dresses are covered with people crud, not dog crud).

          I thought we went over this service animal thing in the airplane post. You can’t ban service animals. Period.

    • CFinWV says:

      @Tmoney02: ADA disagrees with you.

      • kerry says:

        @CFinWV: Thank you. There is no excuse for denying a customer access because they have a service animal. I don’t care if they’re worried the dresses may get a dog hair on them. The ADA says the customer and her service animal are welcome in your establishment, regardless of what kind of business you do. It is the law.

      • supercereal says:

        @CFinWV: @conquestofbread: For anyone who actually reads the ADA, there are several clauses that do not require the business to accommodate a disabled person. This doesn’t seem to be one of those cases, but it’s ridiculously annoying when people use the ADA as a blanket law, that covers every case, that every business must follow, in every scenario. It’s not.

        • floraposte says:

          @supercereal: And here’s where people can go to read the act: [www.ada.gov]

          And the ADA home page offers some useful links to overviews for various entities dealing with the ADA:
          [www.ada.gov]

        • Eyebrows McGee (now with double the baby!) says:

          @supercereal: For example, I had a friend who owned (of all things) a llama farm. They gave tours of the farm, but were not required to accommodate service dogs on the tours because dogs (apparently even healthy ones) present some health risk to the llamas. They provided an area for service dogs to wait if the owner wanted to take the tour with a human aide, but the dogs were not allowed out on the tour. They actually did get sued over it, and won. (It was all very bizarre!)

    • Joe Lachiana says:

      @Tmoney02:

      Agreed. Sorry, but just like 6 Flags you can’t ride unless you are a certain height AND THIS INCLUDES people that lost their legs for whatever reason.

      If that dog had made a mess of a dress (nice) then who’s problem is it then?

      • sprocket79 says:

        @Joe Lachiana: Service dogs are NOT pets. A service dog is a working animal. It’s not little Fido who has no bladder control. A service animal knows where it is appropriate to relieve itself and where it is not. A service animal will let it’s owner know when he needs to use relieve itself, it doesn’t just stop and poop.

      • MMD says:

        @Joe Lachiana: I hope you don’t own a dress shop, or you could get fined, too…

      • LadySiren is murdering her kids with HFCS and processed cheese says:

        @Joe Lachiana: Your allegory is flawed – the height restrictions at an amusement park are in place for safety reasons, not because letting on someone who is too short or has lost their legs might somehow damage their equipment (well, unless you consider a body falling out of a car while upside-down).

        All of this is moot anyway – it’s the LAW to let service animals in and I don’t give a damn what the shop owner thinks. She has not only a legal obligation, but IMO, a moral obligation to make certain accommodations for disabled customers. What she did was reprehensible and again, IMO, unnecessary.

      • The Porkchop Express says:

        @Joe Lachiana: you sure about that? the height requirment for most rides is probably to make sure that your torso is large enough to be held in by the upper body restraints. legs won’t keep you on most of the rides I’ve been on.

      • mmmsoap says:

        @Joe Lachiana: Except the Six Flags rule is about safety (the link points to an explanation about safety regarding employees, not patrons, but the analogy is pretty fair). The wedding dress issue was not about safety at all, but about profits.

        If the dog made a mess of something, it would be no different than a person making a mess of something, and they should deal with the dog the same way they would deal with a person. If a person spills or steps on the dress and they are expected to pay for it, then the same goes for the dog. If not, then not.

        Service animals should be treated as if they are professional, working animals. They are under control, and any business should expect that they will remain under their user’s control, instead of assuming the opposite,

    • Yujin Ghim says:

      @Tmoney02:
      thats why god invented a lint roller…deal with it

      • Tmoney02 says:

        @Yujin Ghim: Sorry somebody already mentioned that and I addressed it. Please try to actually add to the conversation. And what exactly am I dealing with?

    • flamincheney says:

      @Tmoney02:

      I’ve met many people who shed worse than dogs. Should people be banned too?

    • I_have_something_to_say says:

      @Tmoney02:

      No one here REALLY knows what happened so lets all just crap all over Tmoney02. I would also question why the America Dental Association has been brought up multiple times.

    • Kaiser-Machead says:

      @Tmoney02: This isn’t some shagtastic mongrel. A well kept service dog isn’t going to leave lots of hair everywhere. This isn’t some giant tabby climbing through the clothes. The breeds are usually of retriever variety, and they aren’t known for leaving lots and lots of hair everywhere just by walking by it.

  4. juri squared says:

    That’s… really, really insulting. And amazingly ignorant.

    You know what the store should do (besides retraining its staff)? Make a large donation to either an MS or service-dog-training charity.

    • Traveshamockery says:

      @jurijuri: “You know what the store should do (besides firing its staff)? Donate their salaries to either an MS or service-dog-training charity.”

      Fixed :)

    • Corporate_guy says:

      @jurijuri: But it’s not an ADA protected service animal. It was providing no service. The lady was in a wheelchair. The dog was just there for moral support. She even admits to this fact in the article.

      “He’s always right beside me, never leaves my side,” said Troutman.

      A person in a wheel chair does not need a dog following them everywhere.

      • tbax929 says:

        @Corporate_guy:
        I’m glad you’ve decided that for everyone in a wheelchair. Since my gf is in one and has a service dog, allow me to enlighten you.

        1. Her dog picks things up for her when she drops them.
        2. Her dog opens doors to her home, bedroom, refrigerator, etc.
        3. Her dog makes enough noise to scare off an intruder who would otherwise think she’d be an easy target for an attack.

        I’m guessing you didn’t think of any of these needs before you posted something so stupid.

        • supercereal says:

          @tbax929: There’s a huge difference between a guide dog and a dog that just so happens to do thing’s you can’t.

          You hardly seem to be someone who can be objective in such judgments…

          • floraposte says:

            @supercereal: Nonetheless, s/he’s right. A dog trained to assist a disabled person by doing things s/he can’t is, in fact, a service animal. Here’s the DOJ description of same: [www.ada.gov]

            This is inarguably the law. If you want to argue that it shouldn’t be, that’s another discussion, but this is absolutely the legal definition of a service animal that needs to be treated accordingly under the ADA.

          • hedonia says:

            @supercereal: Just so happens? It performs a service that it is specially trained to do, for someone who cannot perform that service themselves. It is a service dog. It doesn’t matter if the service is guiding the blind, or picking up socks, or opening doors, it is a service dog helping a disabled person.

      • juri squared says:

        @Corporate_guy: Service dogs are used in a lot more situations than you’d think. I could wax on for ages, but I’ll just post this bit I lazily grabbed from [en.wikipedia.org]“>Wikipedia:

        The Americans with Disabilities Act (1990) defines “service dog” under its broader definition of “service animal”. “Service Animal” (ADA Subsection 36.104): “Any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including, but not limited to, guiding people with impaired vision, alerting people with impaired hearing to intruders or sounds, providing minimal protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, or fetching dropped items.”

        Seriously, do some basic research before judging someone.

      • takes_so_little says:

        @Corporate_guy: “… it’s not an ADA protected service animal.”

        It doesn’t say this anywhere in the article. Your assertion that the fact that he’s always with her means he’s not a service animal is asinine. How often is a service animal by it’s owner’s side, according to you? Why aren’t service animals allowed to give moral support?

        Quit making shit up.

        • LadySiren is murdering her kids with HFCS and processed cheese says:

          @takes_so_little: You have to realize you’re talking to the biggest corporate apologist on the site. Please don’t feed the troll.

        • The Porkchop Express says:

          @takes_so_little: let’s all realize there are dogs for peopole who have seizures that can detect when a seizure is coming thus allowing the owner to get to a safe location to have said seizure. these dogs don’t do too much else, but people can’t do that so…

  5. sir_pantsalot says:

    That sounds about right. They apologize to the news station if Ms. Troutman believes she was treated improperly.

    They should apologize to the old lady for what they did not what she believes happened.

  6. lalaland13 says:

    “If she believes she was improperly treated?” Nice way to phrase that letter, Isis Bridal. And a $50 credit? Good one. They’re never coming back to your store again.

    She wasn’t bringing her pet puppy in there, jerks. And service dogs are especially trained to deal with ignorant jerks like you who think they’re going to crap all over the dresses.

  7. Robert Jason Cervantes says:

    I think in this case, the store could have done more. They could have gotten one of the coworkers to help out the lady move about the store. Or they could have went to corner or section of the store where the woman could have been brought the dresses. Was this woman offered options like these? If not, that’s a bad store. But if she was and didn’t take it, I can’t really blame the bridal store on this one.

    • korybing says:

      @Robert Jason Cervantes: Yeah, I’ll agree with that. While it’s stupid to think that the dog would ruin any of the dresses in the first place, if they had offered her an alternative to not using the dog in the store there would be less room to argue here.

    • Traveshamockery says:

      @Robert Jason Cervantes: Americans with Disability Act. Look it up. Actually, Let Me Google That For You: [lmgtfy.com]

      • Robert Jason Cervantes says:

        @Coach Cal Is My Dream Weaver:

        I don’t know if your comment was meant to affirm what I said or simply try to be all high and mighty.

        I think you are missing the point. The dog could potentially ruin inventory when it brushes up against the merchandise. I’m not saying they shouldn’t have denied her. Simply provide her with an alternative so she can shop and nothing gets messed up by the dog.

        In fact, if you use my first suggestion, she would be getting super personal attention.

        • HogwartsAlum says:

          @Robert Jason Cervantes:

          Several people have pointed out that the dresses in the store are floor models, and are often stained and torn by people trying them on. The trained service dog won’t ruin anything.

          People are messy, nasty, sticky, dirty things.

      • PunditGuy says:

        @Coach Cal Is My Dream Weaver: Kinda snarky for someone who can’t spell disabilities right. (Try your own link.)

        Besides, it would be more helpful to point directly to a site that has something to say about the issue: [www.ada.gov]

      • supercereal says:

        @Coach Cal Is My Dream Weaver: The ADA does not require business to accommodate the disabled in every conceivable scenario. In fact, there is more than one reason that a business may legally use to deny service to a disabled person.

        • floraposte says:

          @supercereal: None of which would seem to apply here, though. However, I suspect that bringing the dresses (or the relative in the dress, if that was the shopping trip) to her may have been legally sufficiently accommodating so long as they were prepared to bring her as much stuff as she would otherwise have seen.

  8. Chadams28 says:

    I just googled Texas’s service dog laws and they have to be leashed. Nice one on Isis’s part for thinking that adding an “only when on a leash” caveat was some sort of smart face-saving move, not knowing that the state already had that covered. They look stupider for acting like they’re revamping their store policy in light of their original f-up, which is more upsetting and makes the apology less sincere than it already wasn’t.

  9. Rachacha says:

    I have never seen a service dog that was rambunctious, even the ones that were still in the early days of training. My kids when they were young were always afraid of dogs, except for service dogs who they perceived as just another person who happended to have 4 legs and a tail. The dog was also a good mechanism to introduce the kids at a young age to people with disabilities, and also how they should also never try to pet or aproach a service dog without first asking the owner. In the two circumstances when the kids were able to interact with the dog, the dog was in training, and the trainer made it an educational experience for both the dogs (no matter how much love the kids give you, ignore them) and my children (don’t touch the dogs when they are working unless the owner says it is OK).

    A Rambunctious service animal that does not obey…that would be called a “Service Cat”, and yes, the imagry of possibilities is quite funny.

    • Irish Lion says:

      @Rachacha: Oh! That last line is just so hilarious. And true.

    • kerry says:

      @Rachacha: I have met a rambunctious service animal, but he was not working at the moment, but was playing with my dog at the park. The owner and I discussed the discrimination he faces constantly when trying to bring his animal into stores to do his everyday shopping. Even if he puts the little vest on his dog, and keeps a record of the dog’s service training (he is trained to predict his owner’s epileptic seizures and assist him when the happen), people try to deny him and his dog access. On the bright side, he’s gotten hundreds of dollars in gift cards from our neighborhood supermarket by way of apology.

      • lulfas says:

        @kerry: To be fair, there is no discrimination. He’s treated exactly like every other person who can’t bring animals into a store, which is the part he doesn’t like.

        • kerry says:

          @lulfas: Except that when he tells them it is a service dog they balk, and tell him he’s still not allowed, which is against the law. They even do it when his dog is wearing a vest. If a person declares that their animal is a service animal the ADA states that any business that is open to the public is obligated to allow in that person and their dog.

        • Jennifer Duquette says:

          @lulfas:

          Except that the law forbidding animals in stores and restaurants EXEMPTS service dogs. Have you ever known anyone with a service animal? Or anyone with a serious disability?

          Imagine for a second that you had a disease where all of your motor skills on one side of your body literally vanish. Imagine having a service dog trained to help you get through your daily errands and such, and then imagine being told that, in spite of the fact that the law allows you to bring your service animal wherever you go, some jerk has decided that if other people can’t bring dogs into Store X, then neither can you.

          This would be the equivalent of someone walking up to you and giving you a ticket for using your wheelchair on the sidewalk because “wheeled vehicles” are prohibited on the sidewalk.

          Your comments are so utterly rude that it amazes me and only further reminds me that there are people out there who refuse/are unable to understand how much a disability can mess with your life unless they themselves end up getting such a disability.

          • lulfas says:

            @Jennifer Duquette: My old man is in a wheel chair with his leg stuck straight out, making most places just about impossible for him to go. He chooses to not go to places that don’t support him, and spends money at the places that do. I understand much more of dealing with that than you can imagine. I (and he) just don’t expect people to go out of their way to support him. He takes care of himself.

            • Jennifer Duquette says:

              @lulfas:
              Is following the law really “going out of their way” to help? Seriously? Because I don’t think it is. My dad is (hopefully temporarily) handicapped as well, and while I don’t expect people to bow and scrape to him, I do expect them to heed the law and behave appropriately, which I don’t think is a lot to ask.

              I know that it would really bother me and my dad if, for instance, he was told he couldn’t bring his walker into a store because it might scuff the floors, or something along those lines. Why? Because he needs his walker in order to get around even remotely independently, and will likely need a wheelchair sooner rather than later.

              And, once again, it is ILLEGAL to tell someone they can’t bring a service dog into a place of business. ILLEGAL. Not to mention rude and utterly ill-advised, from an ethical and legal standpoint.

            • floraposte says:

              @lulfas: Your father is free to limit himself however he chooses. Why should people who want to go out and do stuff, and who have the law to support them, forego that practice because of your father’s tastes?

            • Kaiser-Machead says:

              @lulfas: His limitations aside, this doesn’t set a universal standard on everyone else. My guess is that he doesn’t want to be a burden of going through the process to accommodate him. I can certainly understand that, but a guide dog does not create the necessity to make a wide berth. A person who requires a service animal doesn’t necessarily need special provisions, moving lots of furniture out of the way and so forth. It’s just a 40-50 lb animal that’s well capable of being out of the way, and is guaranteed to have the proper training to not do the things that generally warrant their restriction from the premises.

              • Eyebrows McGee (now with double the baby!) says:

                @Kaiser-Machead: I’ve noticed, since I got to be about 6 months pregnant, that there are stores I simply can’t shop in anymore (I’m looking at you, Kohl’s!) because the racks are too close for me to take my belly past them!

                And yet a service dog would be perfectly capable of maneuvering in the same area.

                (And while I don’t need one of those places where the racks are a zillion feet apart, having them THAT close together is just bad planning.)

        • Kaiser-Machead says:

          @lulfas: Due to lots of cane marks on the carpeting, I no longer allow canes in my office. You step in here with that nonsense, you have to go.

    • HogwartsAlum says:

      @Rachacha:

      When I worked at a restaurant in CA, we had a blind lady who came in regularly with a beautiful golden retriever that was her guide dog. And I often saw people on the bus with service animals, both guide dogs and seizure dogs, and other types of helper dogs. NONE of them ever misbehaved.

      God, we all loved that retriever. He was the best dog. I always asked first and then she would let me pet him. :)

    • eakwave1 says:

      @Rachacha: ROTFL “Service Cat”…! You’re going to get me fired!! :-)

      • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

        @eakwave1: I want to see a story about Service Miniature Horses not being allowed places just to hear all excuses people will come up with why not allowing them access is not breaking the law.

        • floraposte says:

          @SpruceStreetPhil: There are service minis, and they’re covered by the law. It’s not specifically dogs.

        • Eyebrows McGee (now with double the baby!) says:

          @SpruceStreetPhil: I lived near a farm that trained service mini horses when I was in law school. The horses trained at local businesses, including the mall. They had the cutest little booties so they wouldn’t wreck the floors.

  10. Cameraman says:

    I occasionally have to help customers with service animals. A fellow employee also has a service animal.

    I hate hate hate dealing with customers with service animals, due to my fear of dogs. But you know what I do? Same thing I do with a customer with BO, or a bad attitude, or an impenetrable accent. I suck it up and do my job with professionalism. Seems like they could have done the same.

    As to the dog shedding (which I think was mentioned in a previous comment)- sucks if the dog sheds everywhere (if that’s what they were worried about), but come on. Sure, it’s a little more work for you, going over all the dresses with a lint roller, but what are you going to do, that’s life in the service industry.

  11. rte148 says:
  12. DanGarion says:

    Considering how many people I see nowadays walking into stores with dogs without service credentials and sometimes even without leashes, I’d love to know if her dog was actually even a service dog.

    • valueofaloonie says:

      @DanGarion: If you’d watched the video, you’d have seen the dog in question was definitely a service dog.

    • Jennifer Duquette says:

      @DanGarion:
      Very clearly a service dog…seriously, why make comments if you can’t even be bothered to watch the video? I worked in restaurants for a long time and was always amazed at the people who would just mosey on in with their dogs, and act shocked when I said it was against health code if it wasn’t a service animal, so I hear you there. But in this case, watch the video before you comment. The more you know! (cue rainbow)

    • oneliketadow says:

      @DanGarion: Nice troll.

    • bairdwallace says:

      @DanGarion: Wow. What a random accusation.

  13. Ilovegnomes says:

    I am way more grossed out by the young woman who had come to a bridal store, muddy and sweaty, still in her soccer uniform, and they let her try on dresses (back when I was searching for mine) than I am at the thought of trying on a dress with dog hair on the bottom of it. I agree with others. If you plan on buying off of the rack, you also plan on having your dress cleaned and pressed. It wasn’t like they were asking the dog to try on the dress.

    • oneliketadow says:

      @Ilovegnomes: I wash all clothes that I buy before I wear them, even sealed things like socks. (Under the assumption that at least some of the Chinese lead that gets soaked in gets washed away).

      /only semi-joking

      • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

        @oneliketadow: there was a “House M.D.” episode about kids getting sick from unwashed new clothes. I mean its fictional but then again, it really is possible.

        • nursetim says:

          @SpruceStreetPhil: I also wash all my new clothes before wearing them, even before seeing that episode of House.

        • Rectilinear Propagation says:

          @SpruceStreetPhil: There was a story on Consumerist about a child in Australia who got burned because he the pajamas he was wearing had a load of Formaldehyde in it and he was sitting near a gas heater: [consumerist.com]

        • oneandone says:

          @SpruceStreetPhil: @nursetim: I enjoyed that episode. The fake designer jeans had picked up serious pesticide residue from the back of a truck, since the person selling the jeans also transported agricultural chemicals. I’ve started washing some of my new clothes since that (and also an experience with having some dyes bleed when I sweated).

  14. renegadebarista says:

    As someone with MS I am curious as to what a service dog does for someone with MS. This is the first person I’ve heard of that uses one

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      @renegadebarista: People with MS have motor skill complications and depending on severity, may have trouble gripping items and carrying items from point A to point B. The dog could facilitate carrying things like a blanket.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      @renegadebarista: Whoops, I’m sorry. I misread your post to be “as someone without MS” so apologies for the redundant speaking on what MS is and all that…and you can probably correct me on things, since I’ve only known one person with MS and she had motor skill problems. I was led to believe that was fairly common.

    • Jabes says:

      @renegadebarista: This website has some info — I guess they’re called “balance dogs”: [ms.about.com]

    • clickertrainer says:

      @renegadebarista: I was curious too! There’s a nice article on about.com If you Google “service dog for ms” it’s the first hit.

      [ms.about.com]

    • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

      @renegadebarista: <- in the MS field, also has MS

      don’t have an MS service dog myself but i speak with plenty of folks who do and i hear the following things that service dogs help with:

      getting up if you fall – a service dog is trained to let you grab onto it to pull yourself up

      navigating hazards if your MS involves optic neuritis or other visual impairment

      a rigid harness on a service dog actually can provide a place to hold and lean when you lose your balance

      a lot of people who have cognitive issues from MS and use service dogs tell me that just having the dog around helps them foucs and keep their mental clarity.

      MS can cause depression – having the unquestioning faithfulness and loyalty of a companion animal seems to help immensely.

    • Bathmat says:

      @renegadebarista: Blindness or vision impairment, due to demyleinization of the optic nerve or the ocularmotor/trochlear nerves that control eye movement, can be a complication of MS. The dog could be a seeing-eye dog in that case.

  15. strizis says:

    I had a lady who wanted to bring in a service dog, (for stress), and the dog was dirty, smelly,shedding, and not well trained, went up to other people, sniffed around the floor, etc. But she had a paper saying it was a service dog. She hasn’t been back lately, but does anyone know if you have to let them in, even under those conditions. This was in Florida. I was going to tell her the next time, she couldn’t come in unless the dog was better trained, and clean.

    • kerry says:

      @strizis: The ADA says that you must allow in all service animals. No documentation required.
      [www.ada.gov]

      • sirwired says:

        @kerry: While asking for documentation is not allowed, you can ask what specific tasks the dog has been trained to do. If the answer is “none”, then it isn’t a service animal, it’s a pet. A “service animal” can also be ejected if it is disruptive, so it is perfectly legal to kick out a dog that is approaching other people, causing sanitation issues (such as in a restaurant), or otherwise being disruptive.

    • renegadebarista says:

      @strizis:

      I had a cafe before my MS started to get worse and we actually talked to the DOJ about this type of thing. You can ask a person with a service dog to remove the dog if they are a disruption or risk to other customers or if they are unsanitary.

    • renegadebarista says:

      @strizis:
      To add to Kerry’s post above we where also told that to even ask for documentation is a violation of the ADA.

    • sirwired says:

      @strizis: Oh, and even if you could ask for documentation, it would be useless anyway. You can order vests, certificates, wallet cards, etc. off the internet, as there is no central certifying authority for what is and is not a service animal.

    • Corporate_guy says:

      @strizis: The dog is only protected if the person has a legal disability for which the dog provides a necessary service. Stress is not a disability. So it is not protected. MS may be protected if the person is using to dog for balance, otherwise no. If the dog’s job is to pick things up, there would be no need for it in a dress store. Or if the person is already in a wheel chair and isn’t relying on the dog for anything. Sure they will have a piece of paper that says the dog is a service animal, but it needs to actually be providing a service in place of a disability to be protected. Helper dogs with pieces of paper calling them service animals are not service animals.

      • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

        @Corporate_guy: Your stupid assumptions fall apart immediately. Service animals provide a service to their handlers, in which some cannot be easily seen. Seizure dogs help those with constant seizures and can alert them if they are about to have one. If this was the case with the lady should she not be allowed in the store because she’s not currently having a seizure and thus has no CURRENT need for the dog? That’s like saying there’s no need for firetrucks in my town because at this exact moment there are no fires.

        Is there such thing as a banhammer for idiocy?

        • supercereal says:

          @SpruceStreetPhil: Say, I’m too lazy to pick things up off the floor. If I get a dog that will do it for me, it’s technically providing me a “service.”

          • floraposte says:

            @supercereal: Yes. It is. However, having a dog that provides a service doesn’t automatically classify you as disabled, which is the leap you seem to be implying.

            I also think you’re implying a standard where the default is the disabled person’s not using the service dog, and that they need to establish a situation will require the specific service of the dog to justify its presence. And that’s pretty much against the intent of the ADA right there–the disabled person gets access, without having to jump through hoops or prove to others what s/he needs.

        • Shadowman615 says:

          @SpruceStreetPhil: Where are you getting Seizure from? Strizis said this was a service dog for stress.

          I’m not sure what that means either. PTSD, maybe?
          [www.mentalhelp.net]

      • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

        @Corporate_guy: really? you’ve never ever dropped anything while in a retail establishment?

      • floraposte says:

        @Corporate_guy: I really think you should read the law, because what you’re saying isn’t really related to the terms it sets forth. Go to the “Definition of Disability” section: [www.ada.gov]

      • MadelineB says:

        @Corporate_guy: Stress may not be a disability, but an anxiety disorder could be. According to the ADA, a disability is “a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.” In any case, it seems like the law is on the side of the service animal owners. They don’t have to provide any proof that they are “legally disabled” or disclose what their service animal does. They get access, period.

        • Corporate_guy says:

          @MadelineB: Stop with the nonsense. I haven’t yet seen anyone call a life threatening peanut allergy a disability. If that’s not a disability, then nothing is.

          And to top it off, many people with the exact same conditions as disabled people like the blind, people with MS, stressed people, etc, don’t use dogs. Which means the condition does not require a dog. Which means the dog is there for convenience, laziness, and to be a pet. So if a person in a wheel chair gets one at request, a perfectly fine lazy person should get the same treatment.

  16. skloon says:

    In Alberta, they are not allowed to ask what your service dog is for, only if it is registered as such. With one business who was insistent on knowing I was tempted to indicate that the dog could tell if I was about to enter a homicidal rage, but that I could leave it outside ( accompanied with twitches and eye rolling )

    • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

      @skloon: The “not allowed to ask” part is true in many of the states as well. You don’t need to provide papers either.

  17. Corporate_guy says:

    Service dogs are not protected by anything. They are just pets trained to pick up dropped items. A store would be stupid to let animals that trigger allergies into their clothing section. This service dog nonsense should be stood up to.

    • Megan Squier says:

      @Corporate_guy: I hope you’re being sarcastic.

    • RodolfoRabulous says:

      @Corporate_guy: You have no idea what you are talking about.

      Of course there are people who take advantage of the law to try to get their pets into stores and restaurants, but there are many legitimate service dogs in this country who are very well trained to perform tasks for people and be as unnoticeable as possible to the general public. They can do much more than pick up dropped items. And that task is extremely useful for certain people, by the way. As for allergies, the presence of the dog itself isn’t that much different from people who have dog/cat hair all over their clothes, people who reek of smoke, and people who wear tons of perfume or aftershave.

    • HogwartsAlum says:

      @Corporate_guy:

      Didn’t you try to pull this crap in the airplane thread?

      Don’t feed him. He doesn’t get it.

    • valueofaloonie says:

      @Corporate_guy: Hey, it’s the resident troll! And here I was hoping that you’d gone and left us in peace.

      • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

        @valueofaloonie: Can we have an anti-star that we can all select and once it reaches a certain number that ip address is banned from accessing the site?

    • Kaiser-Machead says:

      @Corporate_guy: I’m allergic to assholes, thus you are not welcome in my place of business either. Think it’s discriminatory? Well what about my health? Health comes first.

    • Mirshaan says:

      @Corporate_guy:

      I hope you are blind, disabled, or in some way in need of a service dog one day. You seriously need some sort of reality check to your humanity. Your snide “service dog nonsense” comment only makes you look like an uninformed jerk.

      You really need to check yourself some day.

    • nakedscience says:

      @Corporate_guy: You do realize that our world is made for NON-DISABLED people, right? So a disabled person is at a disadvantage. THEY NEED SERVICE ANIMALS TO LIVE. They need them to act as their eyes, their nose. Some use service dogs to detect when a seizure is about to happen. These dogs provide important services to these people who are disadvantaged in a world that is not made for them.

      You are very privileged and selfish. You think, just because you can see, everyone else should cater to YOU. Well, hate to break it to ya: The law says otherwise.

      I hope one day you go blind, or get MS, and suddenly your privileged world will be shattered.

  18. Crim Law Geek says:

    In no way blaming the OP, but what does someone with MS need a service animal for? I’m sure there is a reason, just wondering what that reason is.

  19. sprocket79 says:

    My friend was denied a hotel room just this past Sunday. She called ahead to inform them that she was bringing her service dog, even though she was under no obligation to do so. She’s just polite that way.

    The clerk said that she would not be allowed to bring her dog – no pets allowed. She argued with him saying that it was against the law and talking about the ADA and all of that. Her dog is a registered service animal, not a pet. The guy would not budge. She asked to speak to his manager, but there was no manager on duty. She got his name and I think she made a call to the manager yesterday. I should see how that turned out. The hotel is lucky that she didn’t call the ADA right then and there and report them, they would be facing hefty fines. They are lucky that she is a reasonable person and sees this as an uninformed clerk that needs to be retrained.

    • RodolfoRabulous says:

      @sprocket79: You can call the cops when you’re denied entry. Of course the police are frequently ignorant of the law as well.

      • sprocket79 says:

        @RodolfoRabulous: Yeah, my friend thought of that too. It just wasn’t worth the hassle. In the end, she spoke with her money and went elsewhere. I’m sure something will come of this when she speaks with the manager.

    • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

      @sprocket79: can you reply with what hotel it was (location as well) and if your friend actually did do anything about it? If they did not, I will write to corporate because this cannot go unchecked. Others may have the same problem as well and may not be under the same good circumstances to be able to stay at a different hotel.

      • sprocket79 says:

        @SpruceStreetPhil: I will reply when I know more, probably later today or tomorrow. I haven’t been able to speak with my friends because she’s been in and out of doctor’s appointments the past few days. :(

        @JiminyChristmas I don’t know the specifics because it’s not my service dog or anything, I’m lucky enough to not be disabled. However, I know my friend carries some paperwork and one of them is a hotline you can call to file a complaint or get information on filing a complaint. Like I said, I don’t know the specifics, but I’ve seen the paper she carries with her.

    • HogwartsAlum says:

      @sprocket79:

      I hope she found another hotel. I would love to know what it was so I DON’T go there.

      Buttheads!

    • JiminyChristmas says:

      @sprocket79: Just for reference, you can’t “call the ADA.” The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) is the name of the legislation. It is most often enforced by the Civil Rights division of the Department of Justice.

      • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

        @JiminyChristmas: you can’t call the ADA but it means a lot more when some random person calls up that company and says they won’t use its product anymore because of what they did to someone else. If its the person they did it to, who cares… but if its someone unrelated then this means the story is getting out and others will feel the same thus making them feel more compelled to right their wrong

  20. Micromegas says:

    So, regardless of whether or not this particular store would have been harmed by having an animal on the premises, what is a business supposed to do when there’s a legitimate concern that allowing a dog inside, even a very well-trained and well-behaved one, would be detrimental to the business? Do they just have to suck it up and take it? If so that’s very unfair and the law should be changed.

    Of course, I have a lot of problems with the ADA anyway, such as the mandated handicap parking in almost every parking lot. In downtown areas these spaces are almost always empty while the rest of the parking lot is totally full. Really, there shouldn’t be a minimum number of handicap parking spaces required. The owner of the lot will put in as many as is needed for the people who regularly use the lot, so you don’t have a huge percentage of wasted space. Alternatively, people should be allowed to park in handicap spaces when the rest of the lot is full.

    • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

      @Micromegas: I think your views are pretty biased against the disabled. If a owner wants to have separate drinking fountains for different races should we allow him to do so? No one is being harmed by this, everyone has a drinking fountain to get a sip of water from. But its the underlying message that is wrong and in some cases (many cases) this must be protected. You cannot discriminate against a certain group of people because you just want to.

      Think of these dogs as part of the person, not as pets or even as dogs that walk next to disabled people. The etiquette behind touching dogs kind of explains this. You shouldn’t pet these dogs for two reasons (the first goes for ALL dogs): 1. if they are just people’s “pets”, you shouldn’t touch other people’s “stuff” (property) before asking. 2. If they are service animals and “part” of the person, you definitely would not go up and pet someone on the top of the head that you don’t know.

      My point is that you think its ok for the people in the world to go unchecked in all of their actions towards others. The government and myself and a lot of the other people on this site think people as a whole and people as members of certain groups need some protection from others. Majority (and the morally right) wins.

    • JiminyChristmas says:

      @Micromegas: What a goofy comment. Precisely, pray tell, how is a business owner supposed to independently determine how many accessible spaces they need? Take a survey? Wait for irritated customers to come in and say they wish there were accessible parking?

      Also, just for reference, for a 100 stall parking lot you would be required to have a grand total of 4 accessible stalls. The percentage goes down the larger the lot. E.g.: A 500 stall lot would only need 9 accessible stalls. That’s just a hair under 2% of the total. How is that unreasonable?

      Meanwhile, I hope you never have to learn this one the hard way: “We’re all only one accident away from permanent disability.”

    • floraposte says:

      @Micromegas: Depends. For one thing, as has been noted, the business definitely has the right to eject any disruptive animal, service animal or no. And the ADA provides for an exception for entry criteria that “can be shown to be necessary for the provision of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations being offered.” So no, it doesn’t technically require a business to permit a service animal come hell or high water. But it also doesn’t require that the business remain utterly unscathed by its accommodation, either.

      There’s doubtless tons of actual rulings on this kind of thing, but I’d guess that means, for example, that they could forbid the entry of service animals into the endangered bird enclosure because it makes the birds drop dead or stop laying. They can’t forbid service animals just because it makes other customers uncomfortable or because it might be a problem if somethingorother happened–or because there might be hair left on the merchandise, in a store where the merchandise is otherwise open to contact with the public anyway.

    • The Porkchop Express says:

      @Micromegas: What might your other problems with the ADA be? or is it just that you want to park really close to you local food trough? what’s a little walking for people who should be happy that they can do it?

      And no, I’m not disabled. Glad that I’m not, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t see why the disabled should get a little help here and there.

  21. RedSeven02 says:

    @Micromegas: I believe the standard is 10% of available parking. I don’t remember where/when I read this, and if I’m incorrect, I apologize.

  22. catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

    i’d love to say that the discrimination and ignorance from the store in question and in certain comments on this post are rare things.
    i’d be lying. my job is to talk to people with MS. i do it all day, 5 days a week, for years now.
    sadly, stories like this happen all the time, but rarely make the news.
    not always service dogs, but also wheelchairs, walking aides [i myself have been asked to leave my cane in coat check at a night club because it’s technically considered a weapon] people who have been denied service due to speech or motor impairment so it is assumed they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs….
    employers find ways to fire people with MS or other disabilities every day, no matter how illegal it is.

    i wish more people reported it to the news like this person did.

  23. calchip says:

    One of the problems that you run into with any good legislation is people misusing it. In the case of the person with the dirty, untrained dog that had a certificate saying it was a service dog, most likely it was the person’s pet, and she bought a certificate off of some Internet-based company that is meaningless.

    But… to protect people from discrimination, ADA is very strict and, as other posters have noted, you cannot ask for documentation that an animal is a service animal, nor what disability it is assisting you with.

    So the selfish assholes with spoiled, misbehaving pets get to carry their animals, which likely have no special training and perhaps not even basic behavioral training, everywhere and anywhere, without any consequence, because in order to restrict those who aren’t entitled, it would compromise the rights of the disabled. Definitely a mess.

    In the case of the OP, it seems really clear that the store owner was ignorant of the law, and now probably realizes that she screwed up bigtime. I’ll wager that it won’t happen again.

    • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

      @calchip: they should have hefty fines against people who do that. The problem is finding out who does. It’s like parking in a handicapped parking spot because you’re too lazy to walk.

      • Rectilinear Propagation says:

        @SpruceStreetPhil: But at least handicapped parking tags/licenses have to be applied for.

        It doesn’t make any sense that there isn’t a reliable way to prove that an animal is a service animal.

        • floraposte says:

          @Rectilinear Propagation: I think there are two problems: first, there’s no uniform standard for proof, since service animals can be trained in a number of different programs or by a private individual; second, there’s no reliable way that doesn’t put the burden on the disabled person to achieve the basic rights the ADA confers.

          Not that I don’t see the possible issue of whinypantses bringing in their precious yippers that have mysteriously become service animals between the car and the store. Just that I don’t see a solution that weeds them out in any useful way without also putting work on the people who just use them properly to go about their business.

  24. ShariC says:

    I can’t help but wonder if Paris Hilton or any of the similar type of ilk tried to saunter into that bridal shop with one of her tiny little creatures, if they’d let her do whatever she wanted without batting an eye.

    I think this has a lot more to do with the woman being 62 and not being seen as a good potential customer (and not wanting to waste time on her) than dog hair.

  25. ZoeSchizzel says:

    I’m a HUGE dog lover, and a HUGE supporter of service pets. That said, there are times when folks on each side have to chill and give a little.

    There isn’t any excuse for businesses that do not accommodate well-trained service pets when doing so would be quite simple. Large malls, hotels, restaurants, grocery stores, drug stores, government offices, etc.

    I can see, however, why a bridal shop would reasonably be a little freaked — white dresses worth thousands of dollars, even if they are samples. I always try to be very considerate of non-dog owners, and also sensitive to those who have a real, pee-down-the-leg fear of all dogs — even perfectly behaved dogs. Maybe an MS sufferer isn’t REQUIRED to be concerned with the bridal store’s freak-out, but if the shopping event is about THE BRIDE then a quick call to see if the dog would cause a huge scene might be in order and then the person would have to decide if the occasion called for making a stand, or being there for a bride without the service animal, or staying home. Yeah, none of those options are awesome, but reality is what it is. AND there is also the chance that had the dog been expected, the store could have made accommodations that would have diffused the whole situation.

    • floraposte says:

      @ZoeSchizzel: I agree that the shop might be alarmed and uneasy. And ultimately that’s their prerogative. What’s not their prerogative is to exclude the disabled because they’re alarmed and uneasy.
      And the shopping event isn’t about THE BRIDE any more than the wedding is. It’s about everybody involved, and any bride who feels somebody should forfeit their civil rights because the situation should be all about her needs to get her wedding dress stolen from her USAir luggage.

      • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

        @floraposte: Amen

        • ZoeSchizzel says:

          @SpruceStreetPhil: I guess we’ll have to agree to disagree. I still believe the bridal party should have at least called ahead. It’s a common courtesy and it could have prevented all of this.

          • floraposte says:

            @ZoeSchizzel: Sure, people can call ahead, to tell a store they use a wheelchair, or they’re pregnant and might not make it through the aisles, or that they have a hearing impairment, or whatever. Where I can’t agree is that it’s a breach of common courtesy for people to simply go about their business as protected by federal law. The burden of common courtesy here falls on the store, and they’re the ones who breached it.

          • SpruceStreetPhil - in a new Pine flavor says:

            @ZoeSchizzel: The WHOLE point of the ADA is so that the disabled are not treated differently by as much as possible. Requiring them or even expecting them to call ahead when they are probably having a very busy day is ridiculous. You may see it as common courtesy to call ahead to the bridal shop but what if their list of places to go was this:
            Bridal Shop
            Cake store
            Shoe store
            Photography shop
            Magistrate’s office
            Pet Store (not required here)
            Every other store people go to…

            Should they call EVERY single store and explain what is happening? And what about tomorrow? And the rest of their life? Is their life come down to calling to get permission to walk in every store they go to? They should never be required to do that. Thank God they aren’t.

            On a separate note, one good thing Wal-Mart is good at is posting their service animals welcome signs.

  26. xsmasherx says:

    Oh god, how many commas were uselessly slaughtered in the writing of this article? I could, hardly, get through it, on account of, the punctua,tion. Writer, get thee to an editor!

    (I mean the news article, not the consumerist blurb.)

  27. silver-bolt says:

    @Tmoney02: The ADA laws fall under a reasonable accommodations understanding. A store does not have to break its back to accommodate the disable, but there are things that they have to do. Doors and aisles being x wide to allow people with service animals and wheelchairs. Not discriminate against the disable. Wheelchair accessible entrances. Braille copies of menus (or reading to people I think is allowed). Yet a bookstore does not need to have a braille copy of the books they have. A ride does not need to accommodate someone who weighs more then would be safe.

    They could have asked her to have the service animal sit in the lounge while she picked dresses, or brought them to her. Even then, they would only be minorly inconvenienced by a shedding dog (it doesn’t mention what kind of dog even. Not all dogs have long shedding hair). It is not like the service animal was pissing on the dresses (or inside) or biting stuff. Would it be reasonable for a well trained service animal to simply walk in the store without causing a problem? Yes. Had she had a service elephant, it would be different.

  28. ageekymom says:

    After reading about another post on Consumerist about Amer. Airlines directing people to their Complaint division (paraphrasing, sorry) I went to Am. Airlines web site and found that besides service dogs, they mention service monkeys! Wouldn’t that have been a story if the OP brought her service monkey it the bridal store!

  29. bloggerX says:

    What if somebody walks in the store and have a severe allergic breakout due to the dog hair shedding?

    • HogwartsAlum says:

      @bloggerX:

      Then they would probably turn around and walk right back out. Dogs are everywhere, even if they aren’t service dogs. People who have dogs often have dog hair on their clothes. If you were that severely allergic, you’d probably have to be on some kind of meds. Anyway, that’s not an excuse to break the law.

  30. edwardso says:

    I think part of the problem is that the general non-disabled population doesn’t understand the scope of difficulty even a minor disability can cause. I have a clinically mild case of cerebral palsy and although I can walk unassisted certain things, like manuvering small spaces and walking up and down stairs without a railing, can be very difficult and anxiety provoking, but you probably wouldn’t know it by looking at me. Not all disabilites are glaringly obvious all the time.

  31. painfullyblunt says:

    the reason they were worried is the aisled are probably so narrow the dog would rub against the merchandise, possibly leaving dog hair. Im sort of understand their concern, so here’s my solution: don’t pack the rows so damn tight. I hate when i go clothes shopping and the racks are so close you can barely get thru them.

    • edwardso says:

      @painfullyblunt: they did say that they had a special wheelchair area, which is presumably large enough to fit a wheelchair and a dog

    • Rectilinear Propagation says:

      @painfullyblunt: I hate this too.

      I sometimes think that if I were in a wheelchair I would be pissed off all the time. Not because I couldn’t walk but because people seem to go out of their way to make things harder. I’m usually thinking this as I walk out into the street to get around the car parked on the sidewalk but this makes me think it too.

  32. baristabrawl says:

    About this? Aren’t most service dogs trained to be quiet and complacent and just all around nice?

  33. Lauren DeWitt says:

    I can kind of see where they’re coming from, mixing a dog with wedding dresses isn’t always the best idea, especially considering the samples that shops have on the floor are usually in the $5000+ range. I don’t see why they couldn’t have just kept the dog in the lobby instead of kicking the poor lady out though.

  34. Anonymous says:

    I always enjoy reading articles and comments related to service animals- there is so much mis-information. There are service animals and not all are dogs. There are three qualifications under federal law- the person with the service animal must have a disability, the animal must be trained for one person and it has to perform tasks that help augment symptoms of the person’s disability. It can include aleriting someone they are about to have a seizure or a sugar low and help them get to a safe place, they can be a response animal to respond to symptoms of a disability. They can get medicine, remind people to take their medicines help children stay focused, alert to dangerous chemicals for people who have multiple checmical sensitivity. Wether you like the law or not, it is the law- Federal Law, and supercedes state laws unless those laws are more liberal. And, many service animals don’t shed, such as mine who is a poodle mix, that I got on purpose. I have been around service animals for many years before I had mine and I have to say I have never expereinced a dirty, smelly or ill mannered dog. If you don’t know the laws, go to the DOJ website and type in service animals. It will give you
    the info. and criteria. Hope this is helpful. lorreleon

  35. Anonymous says:

    I know that the law states service dogs should be accommodated in these situations, but I can completely understand how in some situations, it would inappropriate to permit a service animal, even a well trained one, to enter a place of business.

    I, for one, am terribly allergic to most breeds of dog. They trigger asthma symptoms, coughing, and, if I come into contact with their hair, hives on my skin. I used to work in retail myself, and in cases where a disabled individual brought their service dog to the store, I was forced either continue working on the sales floor while feeling incredibly sick and uncomfortable, or to excuse myself from work and risk losing part of my hourly pay or getting in trouble with my managers. Typically, I chose to continue working, and in these cases, I had skin hives for several days after the incident.

    Company policy as well as the ADA did not permit me to ask the customer to keep the service animal out of my department, but arguably, I was suffering more from the presence of the service dog than a blind individual would from entering the store with a human rather than animal companion. But its tough to say how a law could validate individual exceptions to service animal admittance, even though I think businesses and employees should have some say in the matter.

  36. misterO says:

    Crap, this pisses me off. First of all, you’d damn well know if it is a service dog because they have the vest that they wear. You’re not supposed to pet, say hello, etc., to the dog if it has that on – it is “working”. I have family that helps to train the dogs when they are puppies and then gives them back to the organization they work with. The amount of requirements, training, and rules are very strict.

    You damn trolls don’t understand that this isn’t a “pet”, and if you were to see how much training the animal received, it’d probably be more than your own education.

  37. caknuck says:

    In the DFW market, no station compares to WFAA when it comes to investigative reporting. Just had to be said.

  38. KMan13 still wants a Pontiac G8 says:

    what about a businesses right to refuse service to anyone, for any reason?