Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
kura

So called “Service Dogs” on board ships

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, STI said:

...We have been to Holland, Norway, Spain, Alaska, and Canada. Holland America has been VERY thorough in vetting us and I don't know how the dogs described in these posts ever got though their process. We have to provide Vet records, certification records, paperwork signed and notarized by authorities in the US so we can get back home...

 

 

We hope to meet you and Brigid aboard HAL some day! 

 

I agree with you that HAL does ask more questions than some lines, but honestly, I have never considered it to be a thorough vetting. Unfortunately, by ADA laws, they really can’t do much of a vetting other than to ask about the dog’s tasks.

 

Each cruise, they ask service dog handlers to provide a current rabies certificate and to send back this questionnaire:

Quote:

Type of tasks/work performed by service animal:

Is your animal certified? Yes/No (Certification is not required):

Name of service animal:, Breed of “, Color of “, Sex of “, Age of “

End quote. Then they ask about the type of relief area required, and ask for your signature acknowledging understanding of a list of rules. A cover letter reiterates the rules (must be on a leash or harness, etc,).

 

HAL has never asked me for anything to be notarized, and as HAL states in the questionnaire, certification is not required. I wish that it were. I believe that most of the rigorous paperwork you described relates more to going ashore in the countries the ship visits. As you know from your travels, most countries require service dog handlers to provide a form 7001 health certificate, typically issued by a USDA APHIS-accredited veterinarian. Often there are country-specific permits and health certificates, too, that need to be sent to a regional APHIS office for an endorsement signature and stamp by a regional USDA vet. It can be fairly complex indeed.

 

The Nieuw Statendam staff presented Raylene with her own bronze medallion in April:

CA83CED6-7020-4315-B503-3BF37D737395.jpeg

Edited by Caribbean Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Caribbean Chris said:

 

We hope to meet you and Brigid aboard HAL some day! 

 

I agree with you that HAL does ask more questions than some lines, but honestly, I have never considered it to be a thorough vetting. Unfortunately, by ADA laws, they really can’t do much of a vetting other than to ask about the dog’s tasks.

 

Each cruise, they ask service dog handlers to provide a current rabies certificate and to send back this questionnaire:

Quote:

Type of tasks/work performed by service animal:

Is your animal certified? Yes/No (Certification is not required):

Name of service animal:, Breed of “, Color of “, Sex of “, Age of “

End quote. Then they ask about the type of relief area required, and ask for your signature acknowledging understanding of a list of rules. A cover letter reiterates the rules (must be on a leash or harness, etc,).

 

HAL has never asked me for anything to be notarized, and as HAL states in the questionnaire, certification is not required. I wish that it were. I believe that most of the rigorous paperwork you described relates more to going ashore in the countries the ship visits. As you know from your travels, most countries require service dog handlers to provide a form 7001 health certificate, typically issued by a USDA APHIS-accredited veterinarian. Often there are country-specific permits and health certificates, too, that need to be sent to a regional APHIS office for an endorsement signature and stamp by a regional USDA vet. It can be fairly complex indeed.

 

The Nieuw Statendam staff presented Raylene with her own bronze medallion in April:

CA83CED6-7020-4315-B503-3BF37D737395.jpeg

Lovely. Her eyes say it all: “what can I do to help?”

 

 

*************

Thinking aloud here. I wonder if the phrase about certification not being required is mandatory, and if it increases “spoof dogs”.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am seeing more and more so called "service dogs" in our local grocery stores which I am totally against for sanitary reasons. Last month I saw one in my  grocery store take a crap on an aisle floor and the owner just walked on and I complained to the manager who just shrugged his shoulders and said he would clean it up. Later in the store I confronted the dog owner and she gave me some story about how she suffers from some anxiety that requires her to have her "service" dog with he at all times. BTW she didn't even apologize for her dogs crap on the floor.

 

The only service dogs that should be allowed in these stores are Seeing Eye dogs, all others should be banned. It is too easy to buy a "service Dog" collar from places like  Pet Smart and then the owners think they can take them anywhere. A dog for "comfort" or "anxiety" to me is just a bunch of nonsense and if you think you need one leave that dog home when you go anywhere in public.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, terrydtx said:

I am seeing more and more so called "service dogs" in our local grocery stores which I am totally against for sanitary reasons. Last month I saw one in my  grocery store take a crap on an aisle floor and the owner just walked on and I complained to the manager who just shrugged his shoulders and said he would clean it up. Later in the store I confronted the dog owner and she gave me some story about how she suffers from some anxiety that requires her to have her "service" dog with he at all times. BTW she didn't even apologize for her dogs crap on the floor.

 

The only service dogs that should be allowed in these stores are Seeing Eye dogs, all others should be banned. It is too easy to buy a "service Dog" collar from places like  Pet Smart and then the owners think they can take them anywhere. A dog for "comfort" or "anxiety" to me is just a bunch of nonsense and if you think you need one leave that dog home when you go anywhere in public.

 

Your story reminded me of an episode when I was traveling by train in England. People often travel with their dogs on the trains, and I've never encountered a badly behaved dog on a train or in a pub. But while I was sitting on the train waiting for it to depart, there was an announcement in the train. "Madam, please clean up after your dog. We saw you and we expect you to take care of this. The train does not depart for several minutes, so you have time to step off the train and clean up your dog's mess. It is an offence to allow your animal to soil the platform." I didn't see anything, so I guess she and her dog were at the other end of the train.

 

Wouldn't it have been wonderful if the grocery store manager had made a similar announcement, perhaps "Will the owner of the dog who relieved himself in aisle 3 please return to clean up the mess." 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, 3rdGenCunarder said:

 

Your story reminded me of an episode when I was traveling by train in England. People often travel with their dogs on the trains, and I've never encountered a badly behaved dog on a train or in a pub. But while I was sitting on the train waiting for it to depart, there was an announcement in the train. "Madam, please clean up after your dog. We saw you and we expect you to take care of this. The train does not depart for several minutes, so you have time to step off the train and clean up your dog's mess. It is an offence to allow your animal to soil the platform." I didn't see anything, so I guess she and her dog were at the other end of the train.

 

Wouldn't it have been wonderful if the grocery store manager had made a similar announcement, perhaps "Will the owner of the dog who relieved himself in aisle 3 please return to clean up the mess." 

 

As a former supermarket manager, I can assure you that this would never happen.  The announcement would create more issues than it solved.  We would approach the person individually.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, terrydtx said:

I am seeing more and more so called "service dogs" in our local grocery stores which I am totally against for sanitary reasons. Last month I saw one in my  grocery store take a crap on an aisle floor and the owner just walked on and I complained to the manager who just shrugged his shoulders and said he would clean it up. Later in the store I confronted the dog owner and she gave me some story about how she suffers from some anxiety that requires her to have her "service" dog with he at all times. BTW she didn't even apologize for her dogs crap on the floor.

 

The only service dogs that should be allowed in these stores are Seeing Eye dogs, all others should be banned. It is too easy to buy a "service Dog" collar from places like  Pet Smart and then the owners think they can take them anywhere. A dog for "comfort" or "anxiety" to me is just a bunch of nonsense and if you think you need one leave that dog home when you go anywhere in public.

What that woman described is an "emotional support animal" unless the animal actually performed a specific set of tasks to ease her disability.  ESA's are not guaranteed public access, and even a service dog that misbehaves can be required to leave.

 

However, I will take very large exception to your statement that only "seeing eye dogs" are service dogs.  As one who did ADA compliance for a cruise ship, I know, and wholeheartedly agree that there are many types of service dogs:  seeing eye, hearing, wheelchair assistance, diabetic alert, epilepsy alert, and PTSD.  All of these animals perform a task for their owners, instead of "the mere presence of the animal assisting the disorder", which is the legal definition of an ESA.  All of these animals are trained not to relieve themselves, except on command, and even then many won't go unless the surface is right.  We were notified last minute that a service dog would be onboard and we used shredded newspaper for the litter box, but the poor dog was trained only to go on cat litter, so she had a pretty poor night until we got to port the next day and got a few bags of litter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What liability, if any, would the cruise line have if the animal on board injured someone?  Or is the owner of the animal completely responsible?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sometimes the problem isn’t so much the dog but the handler.  The first service dog I saw on a cruise was on a Cunard transatlantic crossing.  I had lost my service dog several months earlier so I was interested in learning about this dog on the eight day crossing.

 

i saw the dog prior to boarding and again when I did my first tour of the ship.  I went over and chatted with the handler who immediately told me the dog’s name and told me she was friendly and I could pet her.  I would never ask to distract a working dog but he was most insistent that I pet his dog!

 

During the trip the dog acted quite well behaved, except for those times the handler was a jerk!  The topper was during a lunch we shared in the pub when the man ordered an extra plowman and proceeded to feed it to the dog.  Not that he was discreet about it - he was flinging the food up in the air!!!  The dog - understandably - was leaping about to get the food.

 

The chatter over this pair was rampant, full of speculation over why the man needed a service dog; he didn’t have a visible disability.   After one lecture a woman very bluntly asked why he had the dog.  The response of “she assists me with my medical condition” was vague and probably doesn’t meet the ADI requirement of a task so the woman said “Do you have fits?”   

 

In conversations with the man, I was told he had the dog professionally trained.  The dog may have been trained, but the owner clearly didn’t get the memo about service dog etiquette in public!  I would give the dog a “B+” but the man an “F”.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
18 minutes ago, Miki_moto said:

Sometimes the problem isn’t so much the dog but the handler.  The first service dog I saw on a cruise was on a Cunard transatlantic crossing.  I had lost my service dog several months earlier so I was interested in learning about this dog on the eight day crossing.

 

i saw the dog prior to boarding and again when I did my first tour of the ship.  I went over and chatted with the handler who immediately told me the dog’s name and told me she was friendly and I could pet her.  I would never ask to distract a working dog but he was most insistent that I pet his dog!

 

During the trip the dog acted quite well behaved, except for those times the handler was a jerk!  The topper was during a lunch we shared in the pub when the man ordered an extra plowman and proceeded to feed it to the dog.  Not that he was discreet about it - he was flinging the food up in the air!!!  The dog - understandably - was leaping about to get the food.

 

The chatter over this pair was rampant, full of speculation over why the man needed a service dog; he didn’t have a visible disability.   After one lecture a woman very bluntly asked why he had the dog.  The response of “she assists me with my medical condition” was vague and probably doesn’t meet the ADI requirement of a task so the woman said “Do you have fits?”   

 

In conversations with the man, I was told he had the dog professionally trained.  The dog may have been trained, but the owner clearly didn’t get the memo about service dog etiquette in public!  I would give the dog a “B+” but the man an “F”.

 

You are so right about the handler. My MIL had a large and exuberant dog, just a pet, not a service animal. She wanted to "send" the dog to obedience training, and was surprised when they told her she had to be part of the training. 

 

I do love a good plowman--and Cunard's is great. But I'm cringing at the thought of all that cheese for a dog. And please tell me he didn't give the dogs chutney or onions!!!

 

My only frustration about service dogs is that I love dogs and I want to greet the dog, offer my hand to sniff, then maybe pet it. And I know I'm not allowed to pet a working dog, so I usually put my hands behind my back to avoid temptation. 

 

Edited by 3rdGenCunarder

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, chengkp75 said:

but the poor dog was trained only to go on cat litter, so she had a pretty poor night until we got to port the next day and got a few bags of litter.

Why on earth didn't the owner bring cat litter, if that's all the dog would go on??  To assume the ship would have it.....🙄

 

I agree with terrydtx about dogs (or any animals) in grocery stores.  I saw one man who regularly brought his pet parrot into the store with him.  The people who are abusing the system know very well they can get away with it.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Cruising-along said:

Why on earth didn't the owner bring cat litter, if that's all the dog would go on??  To assume the ship would have it.....🙄

 

I agree with terrydtx about dogs (or any animals) in grocery stores.  I saw one man who regularly brought his pet parrot into the store with him.  The people who are abusing the system know very well they can get away with it.  

Apparently, corporate special needs had informed them that litter would be provided, but as usual, this was not transmitted to the ship.  We normally used litter, but since we hadn't had a dog for a while, we didn't have any ready at hand.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, rugerdog said:

What liability, if any, would the cruise line have if the animal on board injured someone?  Or is the owner of the animal completely responsible?

Since this would be a civil liability suit, you fall into the international law arena, and the laws of the flag state, so it becomes very murky.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, chengkp75 said:

Since this would be a civil liability suit, you fall into the international law arena, and the laws of the flag state, so it becomes very murky.

Thank you.  I appreciate your knowledge.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
47 minutes ago, rugerdog said:

What liability, if any, would the cruise line have if the animal on board injured someone?  Or is the owner of the animal completely responsible?

 

Similar to the captain of the ship, the dog's owner/handler maintains the ultimate responsibility for the actions of his/her animal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, chengkp75 said:

Apparently, corporate special needs had informed them that litter would be provided, but as usual, this was not transmitted to the ship.  We normally used litter, but since we hadn't had a dog for a while, we didn't have any ready at hand.

Thank you, I had no idea the ships use cat litter!  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for your nice comments.a few additions to my notes from yesterday.Any "service dog"that bites may immediately be removed from the premises and ADA will no longer apply and their certification should be revoked. re the person who was tripped on the stairs. No real Service dog and partner (the person using the dog) would be running up the stairs especially on an extended leash. I keep Brigid on a traffic control leash if I am afraid she might get distracted. Service dogs don"t use extension leashes. Lastly Holland America excursion people have been wonderful about checking with excursion operators about Brigid before I book the excursion. I have never been refused.

Hope that helps.

Sister Teresa Irene

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Cruising-along said:

Thank you, I had no idea the ships use cat litter!  

Some do, some use wood chips, some use the "astroturf" stuff.  We found that litter was easiest to simply bag and incinerate.

Edited by chengkp75

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, Cruising-along said:

Thank you, I had no idea the ships use cat litter!  

 

Koningsdam March 2019. They used turf

 

Image may contain: indoor

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
37 minutes ago, Copper10-8 said:

 

Koningsdam March 2019. They used turf

 

Image may contain: indoor

 

 

This is what I've seen on all our cruises.  I'll have to start being more observant, maybe I'll see one with cat litter.  😃

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/13/2019 at 8:18 PM, Mary229 said:

 

Sorry, wrong post. Correct one follows:

 

On 5/13/2019 at 8:28 PM, daisy-mae said:

There were two small pups on our recent Zuiderdam cruise to the Panama Canal. Both belonged to the magician and (spoiler alert) were part of his act. Apparently he could be seen walking them on the third deck, where a patch of grass had been set out for them to use. 

 

 

I saw this same bozo on a Zuiderdam cruise. At the time he had only one French poodle whose part in the act consisted on carrying some prop onto the stage (and not very well, the dog was all over investigating the stage).

 

The dog peed on the floor in front of one elevator while I was standing there.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
42 minutes ago, Homosassa said:

 

 

 

I saw this same bozo on a Zuiderdam cruise. At the time he had only one French poodle whose part in the act consisted on carrying some prop onto the stage (and not very well, the dog was all over investigating the stage).

 

The dog peed on the floor in front of one elevator while I was standing there.

 

 

 

I'm not sure that I would call him a bozo; his act was actually quite entertaining, and the dogs, two identical pomeranians, were very well behaved. He had a photo op the next day and the dogs, one cradled on each arm, never made a sound.

Edited by daisy-mae
vocabulary

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Copper10-8 said:

 

Koningsdam March 2019. They used turf

 

Image may contain: indoor

 

 

 

And I thought that was reserved for me. 

Well, I be dogged!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have  neighbours who are snowbirds  to South Carolina.  The condo they own doesn’t allow pets so off they went to the Internet and got their emotional support dog certificate. I was disgusted and told them so. 

I have worked for a few years for a cruise line and did a 49 day amazon cruise. A passenger did the 49 day and then decided to extend for another 2 weeks. All of a sudden she needed her emotional support dog for the last 2 weeks. How did she manage the previous 49 days. She also managed to go ashore without it  and expected guest relations to look after it - which surprisingly they did   It was a horrible thing. Not trained and pooped where it wanted. I was disgusted 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/14/2019 at 12:10 AM, sandiego1 said:

You'd lose that bet 🙂 I'm on the WC and the 2 dogs and their owners are in an inside cabin. I don't know how many cruise days they have or if they are 4 or 5 star Mariners.

Well, you would loose that bet because the 2 yappers were in cabin 6107, a VERANDAH.  How do I know that without a doubt?  Because I was in the cabin next to them and heard them every day and saw them going in and out with the dogs.  One day I went out on my verandah and the 2 of them rushed under the divider, barking and snarling.  My husband came out and chased them back.  Just yesterday, one was wandering around the hallway without anyone around.  The lady in the cabin on the other side of them saw it and pounded on the door to let them know.  Seriously?  They didn't know one of their dogs was gone?  I also saw the man out many times without any dog with him.  I heard the stories about the disruptions and security called on at least 2 occasions.  Totally unacceptable.  I wrote a strongly worded comment card, let me tell you.  I love animals; have had everything from birds to cats, dogs and horses, but these 2 scared the hell out of me when they charged me that day.  One good thing about them is that they didn't wake us up during the nite.  That probably would have necessitated yet another security call!

 

I completely understand the need for a proper Service dog; they are amazing animals.  These 2  Yorkies were supposed "comfort" dogs.  They were not trained whatsoever.  If a "comfort" dog (animal, and no..."sqeeze" wouldn't count, lol) becomes a legitimate regulated designation, I'm sure that training would be a requirement also.

 

I hope no one is getting Service and "comfort" confused; there is a huge difference between the two. 

 

Linda R.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • 2019 Cruisers' Choice Awards
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...