Skip to main content
Publish date:

It could soon be a crime to pass off your pet as a service animal

A bill unanimously gained approval in the Minnesota House.
Author:

Who would do this, right? But people trying to pass off their pets as service animals is a problem and one Minnesota lawmakers want to stop.

Minnesota is set to be the latest state to crack down on those who pretend their pets are service animals to gain favorable access to restaurants, hotels and places of business.

PBS reported last year that as many as 19 other states in the country are taking similar measures, saying it's giving service animals a bad name when owners slap a vest on their pets who don't know how to behave in public situations.

It's led to situations where untrained pets have attacked genuine service animals in public spaces, as this article by the Chicago Tribune describes.

On Monday, the Minnesota House passed by a vote of 125-0 a bill that would make it a petty misdemeanor to misrepresent an animal as a service animal in a public place to obtain rights or privileges afforded to genuine service animals.

It was sponsored by Rep. Steve Green (R–Fosston), and there's a companion bill in the Senate sponsored by Sen. Justin Eichorn (R–Grand Rapids).

According to Session Daily, Green said the law would "provide protection for businesses and those who have a true need."

Session Daily also notes that two questions can be asked of someone with "invisible" disability claiming an animal as a service animal: "Is this animal required because of a disability?" and "What work or task has that animal been trained to perform?"

Next Up

Flickr - police lights squad siren - Edward Kimmel

Woman in critical condition after being shot in the head in St. Paul

Officers responded to the incident at around 2:45 a.m. Saturday.

Alexander Mattison

Vikings-Lions: 5 things you can count on

It's a great time for the Vikings to play the Lions.

covid

Omicron variant confirmed in Wisconsin man who traveled to South Africa

Five other cases have been confirmed and linked to a Wisconsin wedding.

Sharon Mollerus - duluth - snow plow car

Sunday snowstorm walloping MN's North Shore with huge totals

Just ridiculous snow totals expected the rest of Sunday.

Screen Shot 2021-12-05 at 6.49.03 AM

Saturday snow causes havoc on Twin Cities roads

There were countless spinouts and crashes across Minnesota.

Kirill Kaprizov

Wild win battle of NHL's hottest teams, extend winning streak to six

Kirill Kaprizov delivered a shootout winner to take down the Maple Leafs.

Eric Kendricks

Vikings downgrade Eric Kendricks to out against Lions

The Vikings have also activated Michael Pierce from injured reserve.

u.s. attorney

Minnesotan sentenced after assaulting man with baseball bat

Marshall Wayne Boshey was sentenced to 30 months in prison followed by two years of supervised release.

Target store

Target's gift card discount is back, but for this weekend only

The fine print: for Target Circle members only (but membership is free).

Related

Pet owners beware, there's dog flu in Minnesota

Four cases have been reported across the state.

Chuck & Don's now selling products containing cannabinoids

The Minnesota chain will carry the products at its 30 stores.

Seriously, don't leave your pet in a hot car

It's extremely dangerous to leave your pet in the car in this heat.

Seriously, don't leave your pet in a hot car

It's extremely dangerous to leave your pet in the car in this heat.

Screen Shot 2019-11-22 at 10.11.55 PM

All pets adopted after huge turnout at Mpls. 'Clear the Shelter' event

A fantastic day for Minneapolis Animal Care and Control.

2-headed deer found in MN is unique in natural history

A mushroom hunter found them near Freeburg in 2016.