It’s easy to get your pet designated an emotional support animal. But abuse of the system takes a toll on those with genuine needs
According to her owner, Nick, 40, Rosie – a 50lb, eight-year-old yellow labrador retriever – is a very good girl. (Both man and dog are using a pseudonym for reasons which will be soon made clear.)
Much of Rosie’s goodness is inherent, by virtue of her being a dog. But Rosie is not just a lovable creature, she is a helpful one, too. Rosie can open Nick’s fridge for him. She can press handicap door activation buttons, heel off-leash on busy New York sidewalks, and she’s even dabbled in a little search and rescue. She exhibits extreme self-control, especially when wearing her assistance animal vest, which she knows means she’s on duty.
Nick doesn’t fly with Rosie anymore, but when he did, she’d take up to 20 flights a year.