Service animals now limited to dogs and miniature horses in Ariz. - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Home

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
|
||
Logout|My Dashboard

Service animals now limited to dogs and miniature horses in Ariz.

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Monday, February 25, 2013 4:13 pm

Forget the ferrets. Cancel the cats. And don't even discuss the ducks.

On a voice vote, the state House on Monday agreed to narrow the definition of what can be considered a "service animal'' solely to dogs and miniature horses. Every other kind of creature, furry, feathered or otherwise, now allowed under Arizona, law would become off limits.

A final roll-call vote will send the measure to the Senate.

Roxane Nielsen, owner of Prescott Brewing Co., told lawmakers during an earlier hearing on HB 2401 the move is long overdue.

"I can't say we've had lions and tigers and bears,'' she testified. "But we've had parrots and ferrets and squirrels.''

The federal Americans with Disabilities Act requires that places where the public can go must accommodate service animals.

Two years ago, however, the U.S. Department of Justice revised its own rules to narrow the list of animals recognized to dogs and miniature horses. But the Arizona law has not kept pace, allowing the owner of any kind of animal to declare it a "service animal.''

Rep. T.J. Shope, R-Coolidge, told colleagues he's seen the same problem in his family-owned grocery store.

"It creates a public health problem in our business,'' he said. And Shope said a single incident where an animal contaminated food would put it out of business.

The changes in HB 2401 actually are much broader.

Aside from limiting what can be a service animal, the legislation also spells out what kind of conditions allow someone to bring a dog or miniature horse with them. More to the point, it says that an animal required solely for "comfort'' or emotional support does not qualify.

Put another way, someone who says he or she needs the animal solely because it makes them calmer is going to have to leave it outside or at home.

But the federal law does spell out that the list of what is considered acceptable includes calming an individual with post traumatic stress disorder during an anxiety attack. And the Arizona statute would refine that to include helping those with psychiatric and neurological disorders "by preventing or interrupting impulsive or destructive behaviors.''

That led Rep. Kate Brophy McGee, R-Phoenix, to question how a restaurant owner can determine someone with a real disability -- and not simply "a Paris Hilton need to carry your animal with you.''

Sherry Gillespie, lobbyist for the Arizona Restaurant Association, said businesses need to tread carefully.

When a disability is not obvious, she said federal law permits someone to ask only two questions: is the animal required because of a disability, and what work or task the animal has been trained to perform.

But they cannot inquire about the person's disability or require medical documentation. They also cannot demand a special identification card or ask that the animal demonstrate the ability to perform the task.

Helping someone with certain psychological disorders is only one of the list of tasks that would be considered acceptable under the Arizona law. Others range from helping someone with vision problems to navigate, alerting those with hearing issues to the presence of people or sounds, pulling a wheelchair, assisting during a seizure, retrieving items like medicine or a telephone and assisting with balance or stability.

That still leaves the question about those miniature horses.

"What can they do that dogs can't do?'' asked Rep. Eric Meyer, D-Paradise Valley.

"They live longer than dogs,'' said Rep. Heather Carter, R-Cave Creek, the sponsor of the legislation, who said she rides and shows horses. "So when you establish this relationship with your service animal, if you're going invest that kind of time and money into a relationship that you're 100 percent dependent on that animal, wouldn't it be great if you could have something that lives 20-30 years as opposed to eight, 11, 12 years.''

She also said they have greater peripheral vision. And finally, because they're stronger than most dogs, they can help pull people in wheelchairs much easier.

"And I'll just answer the question that everybody's asked me privately in hall, and I'm going to put it on the record: They are fully potty trained,'' Carter said.

Rep. Victoria Steele, D-Tucson, agreed that the list of permitted animals should be narrowed, conceding, though, "I'm a cat person.''

More about

More about

More about

  • Discuss

Shelf Awareness for Monday, July 25, 2016

In an unusual store ownership change, rather than see one of its original tenants move out--and leave the mall without a bookstore--Central Sq…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 8:00 am @ http://www.shelf-awareness.com/issue.html?issue=2802

Morning Digest: Former KKK leader David Duke launches Senate run in Louisiana

But one thing is certain: He's a massive headache for the GOP establishment. Both the NRSC's executive director and the chair of the Louisiana…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 7:52 am @ http://www.dailykos.com/story/2016/7/25/1551417/-M…

Hot Take: Phoenix Summer Temps Could Approach Kuwait City's by 2100, New Study Says

Ray Stern A A Think it's hot out now? Summertime high temperatures in Phoenix will average 10 degrees hotter by the year 2100 — as hot as curr…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 7:24 am @ http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/news/hot-take-phoen…

Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake’s criticism of Trump wins him national prominence

Info When asked whether he would attend the Republican Party Convention in Cleveland, Arizona, Sen. Jeff Flake told a reporter he would be mow…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 6:52 am @ https://www.hcn.org/articles/arizonas-sen-jeff-fla…

USA Today: 'Hillary's America' Documentary Cracks Top 10 at Box Office

Originally posted at USA Today by Bryan Alexander. Politics isn’t just center stage after last week’s Republican National Convention in Clevel…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 6:24 am @ http://hillarysamericathemovie.com/blog/hillarys-a…

A New Journey

it has been said that life is a journey, not a destination.  A new journey brings forth hopes and fears, doubts and dreams, yet even the small…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 5:54 am @ http://acorkforkandpassport.com/a-new-journey/

#NationalParksWeek: Cox Conserves Heroes Making a Difference

Its #NationalParksWeek. Across the nation, volunteers are preserving local parks and helping create new outdoor spaces for their communities t…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 5:52 am @ http://3blmedia.com/News/NationalParksWeek-Cox-Con…

Conversations: If Black Lives Matter, then what?

We are experiencing a season of action and change. During a time when we see a world of hate, let’s rally for a culture of love, of giving. Au…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 5:52 am @ http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/phoenix-…

High-speed chase travels through Tempe, west Phoenix

PHOENIX - One person has been detained after a high-speed chase in the Valley on Monday morning. The chase finally came to an end in a neighbo…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 5:28 am @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-phoenix-metro/wes…

Seven ride-hailing alternative apps: TESTED!

In early May, when the ride-hailing companies Uber and Lyft pulled up stakes in Austin after the results of a contentious proposition vote, so…

Published: July 25, 2016 - 5:29 am @ http://www.512tech.com/technology/tested-seven-aus…

Facebook

ahwatukee.com on Facebook

Twitter

ahwatukee.com on Twitter

RSS

Subscribe to ahwatukee.com via RSS

RSS Feeds

Spacer4px

Most Popular

Online poll

Loading…