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I have friends who need their dogs on planes. I had friends who cheated.

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D'Elle, I agree that people who actually have real service dogs spend a lot of time and attention monitoring the dog and fending off the petters and other distracting people.  I know that when I got my dog Sugarfoot certified, I had to work hard to keep people off her, despite the large DO NOT PET patches on her harness. 


A couple of years after i Got her certified (with the county in which I live) they changed their rules for service dogs, and she was scratched because I was her trainer, instead of a special assistance dog training group.  I understand why they did this.  With all the trouble there has been with pretenders on planes and in stores or restaurants.  So I hung up her harness, and she doesn't go into places where mere pets are not permitted.  It's sad, but "worse things happen at sea."


One of the things I began to realize during the time Sugarfoot was in harness was that being watchful of inappropriate behavior from the humans surrounding us was instrumental in lowering my anxiety level.  Sugarfoot took good care of me, and that helped me immensely, but me taking care of her may have done just as much to lower my anxiety level.  It refocused my mind on protecting her from idiots, and strengthened my feeling of being able to cope.  A side-effect, a good one, (that, incidentally works whether the dog is a service dog or not,)




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