How can I tell if an animal is really a service animal and not just a pet?

Some, but not all, service animals wear special collars and harnesses. Some, but not all, are licensed or certified and have identification papers. If you are not certain that an animal is a service animal, you may ask the person who has the animal if it is a service animal required because of a disability. However, an individual who is going to a restaurant or theater is not likely to be carrying documentation of his or her medical condition or disability. Therefore, such documentation generally may not be required as a condition for providing service to an individual accompanied by a service animal. Although a number of states have programs to certify service animals, you may not insist on proof of state certification before permitting the service animal to accompany the person with a disability.

Show All Answers

1. What are the laws that apply to my business?
2. What is a service animal?
3. How can I tell if an animal is really a service animal and not just a pet?
4. What must I do when an individual with a service animal comes to my business?
5. I have always had a clearly posted "no pets" policy at my establishment. Do I still have to allow service animals in?
6. My county health department has told me that only a seeing eye or guide dog has to be admitted. If I follow those regulations, am I violating the ADA?
7. Can I charge a maintenance or cleaning fee for customers who bring service animals into my business?
8. I operate a private taxicab and I don't want animals in my taxi? Am I violating the ADA if I refuse to pick up someone with a service animal?
9. Am I responsible for the animal while the person with a disability is in my business?
10. What if a service animal barks or growls at other people, or otherwise acts out of control?
11. Can I exclude an animal that doesn't really seem dangerous but is disruptive to my business?