10 Responses to “Doc Vader on “Emotional Support Animals””

  1. Brenda Owens

    You know, I’m a big fan, but your pudding me off a little. Last year my sister survived a cerebral hemorrhage caused by her LVAD. We got one of her Chihuahua certified as emotional support animal and he helped her have the courage to go out with her eye patched, walker and learning to talk again. 6 months later she rebleed, we were literally getting ready to discharge home from a tune up at the hospital. She did not survive. I have learned the hard way how difficult the other side of the exam table is. I hope you don’t have to.

    • jennifer stansberry

      As someone who’s been thru this I think people get terms confused. Emotional Support Animals are not protected by the ADA a service dog is and that’s a different subject. A service dog must provide 3 services to a person and be very well trained and are protected by law. You can have a psychiatric service dog but, they are not protected in every state. They aren’t here. I had an emotional support animal. I’m very aware of the difference. I eventually had to have a properly trained service dog due to allergies and a heart condition. She warns me when I’m about to have attacks with my heart so I can set or lie down so if I pass out or collapse I do not get hurt. She also is large enough to restrain me if I’m upset because I use to self harm. An emotional support animal requires nothing. A service dog is very expensive. Lots of training and actually provide a need. I just don’t want you upset. Those of us who require an actual service dog are being drilled because of fake service animals and people not understanding an emotional support dog doesn’t have rights or laws. Doesn’t mean that your sister didn’t need her Chihuahua but, his point is by law it isn’t allowed in an er until it’s providing at least 3 trained services. I took my Chihuahua with me everywhere due to anxiety until my doctor worked with my specialist and determined a service dog would be in my best medical interest. There is a difference and I seriously think that’s all he’s pointing out.

      • Kathryn A. O'Keefe

        You claim that you’ve been through it, and yet you confuse the ADI minimum standards for ADA minimum standards. Also the ADA does protect psychiatric service animals.


        State laws don’t always include PSDs, but federal law does, and the law with more protections for a handler is the one that must be followed in individual states and counties. As an example, some states include animals other than dogs and mini horses in their definition of service animals, which means that a handler whose cat alerts to seizures could bring that cat into public access areas in that particular state.

      • Kristi Parker

        How does a properly trained service animal help help with allergies? You seem confused. Also, a service animal is required to perform One specific task related to a person’s disability. Service dogs are very expensive? Not really mam, as long as they are properly trained you’re within your rights to train your own requiring zero money. Jussayin

      • Dr Dave

        Although I agree with parts of your comment the ONLY requirement of a licensed service animal is ability to do ANY act that is otherwise deemed essential/valuable to the owner. NOT three
        My SD has the ability to know when my cancer is about to erupt (I have a VERY rare type) and that eruption causes me to increase BP and Pulse to life threatening levels followed IMMEDIATELY by a crash in both the dog gives me sometimes as much as 4 minutes and actually goes into the OR with me with her scrubs and the like and site there for hours awaiting my episode if one happens to occur. She is trained to lick me until I respond then keep everyone away from me until I get back to normal. THAT is a trained service animal
        No added features required. If ALL she did was bark when I go into an episode that would be sufficient (although not ideal because of the noise)
        Dr Dave (H&N surgical Oncology

  2. Patricia A. Chappelle

    If I never see another small dog cradled in someone’s arm in the grocery store I will be happy. Your dog does not need to help you pick out your bread and milk. You are not special, the laws apply to you too. It is gross, disgusting and dirty. Your dog is not “cute”, I don’t like your dog and now I don’t like you.

  3. Rachele Conerly

    ZDOGG, you know you’re my fave and, in a Game of Celebrity ‘F*Ck, Marry or Kill’, you’d get the first two every day of the week….


    As a veteran with PTSD, a cancer patient, and pretty serious panic attacks, my service animal is what gets me through. These photos were taken following a 36 hour surgery @ Mayo – 6 DAYS apart [shorter than anticipated bc they couldn’t close my abdomen for scrap days]. She was with me until I was wheeled into surgery, and she was there in the ICU when I was extubated. My pain was better managed with her presence, the nursing staff loved her so much they let her visit other patients (on the floor, and in the step- down units), and – while I was still intubated and sedated, she ended up sitting with a little 6 year old boy, whose dad took a drastic, unexpected turn and coded. She put her head in his lap and they sat beneath the nursing station desk.

    She was trained to: (a) detect seizures, (b) trained to push a button on the floor either independently or upon The command “Get Help.” And she alerted us when my blood sugar dropped below 50. She helps me stay calm when I have severe chest pain and I am frightened…

    And for those commenters about “small dogs,” there’s a reason 4H brings puppies to visit nursing homes. Because they are easier to carry. Small dogs are cuddly, and if you’ve ever had to share a stretcher with a 60 pound boxer (like mine) you can appreciate the difference. JUST BECAUSE the dog is small, doesn’t mean it’s less trainable.

    Within the US, service animals are covered under the ADA, and are considered and treated as a medically necessary support device. To deny a service/therapy animal in any public space equates to denying a person to be able to bring in their wheelchair to said space. It’s not okay.

    It’s also well documented that if a person has a therapy or service dog, they require less pain medication…

    Haha and we all low there’s been more disgusting things on the ER floor! C-diff anyone? Hep B? Sometimes both!

    Do people take advantage of it? Of course they do. Just like people who misuse disability parking passes. Both are incredibly frustrating, for sure! How many times have you seen someone park in disability parking, in their new Corvette, and jog towards the storm in the rain?

    And, surely, it makes me so mad. My heart is literally failing, and that guy took the only open spot.

    But there are invisible diseases, and disabilities that we just don’t see sometimes.

    Anyways you know I heart ya, but this video is not my fave, kinda… a**holeish. But we ALL.have our good and bad days, and sometimes, something a patient does that is annoying is just enough to push us over the top… it only takes a drop to make a full bucket spill over…

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/89f0f3b4dcb30737ca216cc517fab8880fd1cd7bb8032fd28ca975fe711cdc20.png https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/32625ecd91eed737fc8a647a8f326122de6d372b9efeca120b2b49dd59b40480.png But you know all that.

  4. Dr Dave

    Go man GO that was great
    I happen to have an actual Service dog who even goes in the OR with me but it flips me off to see “emotional support animals” all over society as if the animal did anything but look cute and crap anywhere it wants
    To be anything protected it needs to either be trained to do something special or has some ability that is unique
    being cute is NOT either one. Cuteness or relief from panic attacks by looking at him/her is a scam to get to save on paying the dog sitter to come and poop your pug!
    My service dog can determine when I am going to have an neuroendocrine episode complete with blacking out and full escalated cardiovascular results. These nonsense “extra added social features are just a society out of control”
    The ONLY exception MIGHT be for ACTUAL Vets with PTSD as they have already given up enough for our country let them have their cute pups where ever they go if that helps them
    Dr Dave (H&N surgical Oncology)

  5. Eric Overton

    I have mixed feeling son this one, since I am the owner and handler of a registered therapy pet, and we visit hospitals and nursing homes as part of the charity work we do. But there the situation is a little different, since my cat and I both undergo training, she gets a ridiculous amount of veterinary scrutiny, and the facilities we visit all keep a copy of her vet reports on file. We also coordinate with the medical staff where we do and do not go. So the rules are a little different.

    My problem is more with obnoxious children. And my cat is cleaner than your little Johnny, who just took a s**t on the ER floor.

    Cut the animals some slack, and throw little Johnny Floordumper into the Sarlacc.

  6. Elliott says meow

    There’s a bunch of nutty wads here with their “but, but, but…Snookems give me courage!” BS.


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