New Texas Law Supports PTSD Service Dogs

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Last Friday, Texas Governor Rick Perry signed into a law a bill that expands the definition of a service dog to include those that help with PTSD. The new law will ensure that veterans can bring their service animals into restaurants and other businesses. Perry received help from a four-legged friend in signing the bill.

Too often we hear about veterans being denied access to businesses because of their PTSD service dogs. Texas is hoping to change that with their new law. Sponsored by state Rep. Jose Menedez the law ensures that veterans and their service dogs are allowed in public places.

The law will take effect on September 1st and includes a penalty of a $300 fine and community service for those who discriminate against a disabled person by either denying them access or asking questions other than what the dog is trained to do. There are also penalties for those who falsely claim to have a disability.

Perry signed the law at a VFW hall in San Antonio and had help signing the law from a 3-year-old rat terrier named Boots. Boots is a service dog for veteran Adan Gallegos, who served in Iraq from 2003 to 2004.

“For veterans suffering from PTSD, a service animal can be a strong part of their recovery and a comforting presence in the midst of what can feel like chaotic and stressful situations,” said Perry. “This bill is a smart way for us to give back and help any Texan, including our veterans, lead a healthy, productive life.”

6 thoughts on “New Texas Law Supports PTSD Service Dogs”

  1. I have an “emotional support” service dog for Psychiatric Disorder – “stress, anxiety, depression. My dog is trained to “misbehave” to distract me from what is causing me to have a metal health episode. I am covered under the ADA as these diagnosis’s are a legal disability. ADA is a Federal Law, I have had no problems asserting myself and service dog when necessary. Arm yourself with information to give the person and understand they don’t know what they are talking about. Volunteer to call a police officer and it usually changes the situation.
    Go to ADA.GOV/serviceanimal and read it until you clearly understand it. Print out the information and carry it with you, it makes a big difference when you have knowledge AND your dog is trained to behave precisely on command with simple behaviors such as sit and stay and down. If a dog is constantly misbehaving, he is NOT a service dog. Even if he his a service dog/guide dog for the blind and is continuing to misbehave you can still be asked to leave.

    Reply
    • You give great advice to those who use the aid of a service dog – educate those who are ignorant to the situation. I also think it’s wild that your dog is trained to ‘misbehave’ in order to help you. It’s amazing what dogs are capable of learning!

      Reply

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