Federal and state laws set out the rights of people with disabilities who use animals to assist them. Under these laws, people with disabilities have the right to bring service animals–specially trained to provide some of the work and tasks specific to their disability–into businesses or public spaces. They do not have a right to bring emotional support or therapy animals into these places.
We recognize that pet owners derive a sense of well-being, safety, or calm from their pet’s companionship and physical presence. However, unless they meet the definition of a service animal under federal and state law, we cannot allow such animals into any Hydration Room facilities.
We appreciate your understanding and compliance with the following guidelines. If you do not have someone to care for your pet, we will gladly assist you in rescheduling your appointment to accommodate your needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a service animal?
Under California law, a service animal is a dog that is individually trained to perform a specific task for a person with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other type of mental disability. A service animal is NOT a pet. Examples of service dog work may include:
- Pulling a wheelchair;
- Assisting with navigation for a person who is blind or has low vision;
- Retrieving items such as pens or backpacks;
- Removing a disoriented person from a dangerous situation;
- Reminding a person with mental illness to take prescribed medications;
- Calming a person with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) during a panic attack;
- Assisting an individual during a seizure.
Hydration Room Inc, in accordance with the Americans with Disability Act (ADA), Unruh Civil Rights Act, the California Disabled Persons Act (CDPA), and the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and other California statutes, does not require proof of the service dog’s training. However, we may ask 1) whether the dog is required because of a disability, and 2) what work or task the dog is trained to perform.
Can I bring my emotional support therapy, comfort, or companion animal with me to Hydration Room Clinics?
No. Emotional support animals who are not trained to perform specific acts directly related to a disability are not service animals as defined by the ADA and California law. These animals are not allowed in any Hydration Room facility.
However, psychiatric service dogs individually trained to help a person with a mental disability with specific requirements is a service dog. Individuals that use such a service dog are entitled to the same rights under federal and state laws as someone with a physical disability. Examples of psychiatric service dog work may include:
- Responding to an owner’s panic attack by initiating contact to comfort the individual, and
- Alerting a person exercising poor judgment due to diagnosed bipolar disorder that they are driving dangerously.
Other species of animals beside dogs, whether trained or untrained, are not considered service animals either. The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the individual’s disability.
What are my responsibilities as a service dog handler while at Hydration Room Clinics?
You are responsible for supervising your service animal. In accordance with the ADA, Hydration Room Inc, – requires service dogs to be under the control of the handler at all times. For example, the dog should be housebroken and should be vaccinated in accordance with state and local laws. If your service dog behaves in an unacceptable way and you do not control the animal, or if the dog poses a direct threat to others, you may be asked to remove your dog from the premises. Examples of unacceptable behavior include uncontrolled barking, jumping on other people, or running away from the handler. An example of a direct threat includes biting without provocation.
In the event that a service animal is asked to be removed, Hydration Room will attempt to reasonably accommodate the person with a disability including, but not limited to, offering the opportunity to obtain goods or services without the animal’s presence.
Does my service animal have to be “registered”? Or wear a vest and or other indicator?
No. The ADA does not require that service animals “register” or wear a tag or vest and/or any other identifying equipment.
What are the consequences of not following the above guidelines?
Under California law, misrepresentation of a dog as a service animal, either written or verbal, is a misdemeanor punishable by incarceration up to six months, a fine of up to $1,000, or both.