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Differences matter by H1EROGLYPH Differences matter by H1EROGLYPH
EDIT: Just thought I might add, the description in this stamp is talking about the USA's service dog laws. If you are in another country, your laws might be different.

Man, this stamp was a pain in the ass to make.  
Stare  Well, at least it's finished now.

I wanted to make this stamp because it seems like the general public is very poorly educated on the differences between service dogs, ESAs, and therapy dogs, as well as what kind of special rights each have (especially in public settings). To quote, "Differentiating
between service dogs, therapy dogs and emotional support animals is not a matter of splitting hairs or political correctness.  Each of these dogs has a very different job from the others and the terms are not interchangeable."

Here's a quick list of resources for those who are interested:…   <---- (The best one in my opinion)……………

Service Dogs: Are specifically trained to help mitigate their owner's disability, and are classified as working dogs. In order for a person to qualify for a service dog, they must have a disability that impairs at least one major life task. These dogs are allowed to accompany their owners in most places that do not typically allow pets inside, such as restaurants, hotels, movie theaters, etc. . Most SDs have "do not pet" signs because petting can distract them from their potentially life-saving task that they are trained to perform. If you were, say, a seizure-alert dog, you wouldn't exactly want to be bombarded by strangers in the middle of your job, would you?

Emotional Support Animals (ESAs): Provide emotional comfort to people with mental illnesses (such as those with anxiety, depression, etc.). In order to qualify for an ESA, a person must have a diagnosed mental illness, as well as a note from their doctor proving their impairment. ESAs can be any animal, and do not require any special training, as just their presence is often enough to provide their owner support. However, ESAs are not allowed in buildings/places that forbid pets. They are allowed, though, to stay in houses with "no animal" policies, and ride on airplanes with their owners for free.

Therapy Dogs: Are trained to be able to handle the presence of a lot of people at once, usually of many different ages. Therapy dogs must have friendly, calm temperaments, as they will encounter and bring comfort to many people at once, and will probably be petted by strangers frequently. These dogs are brought to places such as hospitals and nursing homes to lighten up people's days. They do not have any legal protections under the ADA, and are generally not allowed in places that forbid pets.

Disclaimer: The dogs pictured in this stamp do not indicate any specific breed needed for each task. A common misconception is that only German shepherds, golden retrievers, etc. can be service dogs. But truthfully, any breed can be a service dog (yes, even pit bulls!) as long as they perform their task correctly and are not disruptive to other people or dogs in the environment.

Hopefully you learned something new today.  :)

Feel free to use this stamp wherever, but it would be preferred if you :+fav:'d or commented before using it. Also if you're going to use offsite, giving credit would be awesome (but not required, as long as you don't claim you made it).
Please do not repost without permission or claim as your own work. I spent a good 45 minutes or so on the stamp alone.


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BleuHunter1 Featured By Owner Sep 27, 2018
I have a doberman as a service dog, people always think he is fake cause he isn't a lab or a golden. Yet I also have people come up to me and say "Im going to get a vest for my dog so I can just take him everywhere!" like, really..? that's WHY people think my dog is a fake. 
DollaWolla Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
:( Hmm, coincidentally today, Mom came in and asked if a companion dog would be helpful to me, in the wake of realizing how serious my anxiety was getting. Bro's GF tipped Mom off that I had been hitting myself, and her young kids observed it (Worried unbeknown to me) well enough to ask questions afterward. Now, I HAVE been seeing a counselor for over a year now, and dog-wise, we DO have a teacup yorkie (occasionally wiggly), mini-dachshund (unfriendly and territorial), and american pitbull (hyperactive). I wouldn't want a mental-illness doctor note though, because I'm trying my hardest to stay in functioning independent territory. Any advice if you know of any? Crying (No, I can't take pills, because they've eventually failed at least twice, and side-effects interfered with my daily tasks)
schizophrenicme Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2016
I had therapy a couple of times at a hospital that includes a dog. I like animal therapy. It was fun but they didn't have it there for long.
H1EROGLYPH Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
That's cool, but too bad it wasn't there for very long. :(
schizophrenicme Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2016
Yeah I know. It was to bad that it wasn't there for long
Felix-Sebastian Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2016
Some people are against therapy, Emotional support and service dogs. But they seem to be enjoying their work, and I can see love between the dog and master. Out of topic, but I just wanted to talk about that. I hope you do not mind love.

I notice that not only dogs can do this kind of work, but so can mice, ponies, cats and other animals. Consider making a stamp pointing out that there are different species of emotional support, therapy and service animals? 
H1EROGLYPH Featured By Owner Edited Dec 31, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
(Sorry for the late reply)

I could perhaps make a stamp for that sometime. After all, ESAs are called emotional support animals for a reason, and are not limited to just dogs. However, as for SDs, the ADA states that only dogs are recognized under the official definition of "service animals." But they do have a section of law regarding miniature horses. (Why they're not recognized under the definition of service animals when they perform similar tasks to one? I don't know). Miniature horses are sometimes used to assist the blind, and as long as they perform their task(s) correctly and are trained just like any service dog, they are protected by the ADA laws and generally must be allowed into "no pets" buildings with their owners, or at least from what I can tell. They're often a great option for people who are allergic to dogs or would prefer an assistance animal with a longer lifespan.

Also, I do not mind love. :)  I agree that service animals tend to have strong bonds with their owners and tend to enjoy working alongside them.
Felix-Sebastian Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2016
Animals are amazing like that. I wish more people recognized that all animals can and have helped humanity in more ways than one, and are just as good as dogs. 
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Submitted on
December 29, 2016
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