Reply To: PA Challenges; what is your story?

Home Forum Service Dog Laws PA Challenges; what is your story? Reply To: PA Challenges; what is your story?


For all PA challenges I approach it first as an educational moment. I try to be understanding and acknowledge that it is confusing that some people have IDs, or that some “service dogs” are ill-behaved, but then explain what the laws really are. I also recommend having ADA cards in your dog’s vest or in your wallet that you can always hand them out.

I have had very few access challenges in all the years I’ve had DADs and I’m very grateful for that. The one that was the most difficult was at my university in an eating establishment/grocery store environment. In that situation, I explained politely and the employee was not having it – did not care about the law and said “I’m the manager so I get to make the rules”. In that situation, I calmly insisted that I was permitted to stay and he said that I’m not allowed to stay but he gave up and walked away. I then called the disability office at the school since they run the store, and explained the situation. And if it had been a typical store I would have called whoever ran that store. It’s very stressful to be denied access, but I’ve found the majority of the time a calm explanation and being understanding goes a long way. And when it doesn’t, then I view it as an educational opportunity and to help those after me not have to go through it. A grocery store that I visit frequently tried to deny me access the first few times I entered with my service dog in training, but I explained each time to them and I haven’t had a problem since then. So it does make a difference eventually!