Worried about infectious diseases spread

Worried about infectious diseases spread by dogs?

It’s not service dogs you need to worry about.

This letter to the editor popped up in our Service Dogs Google Alert: http://ow.ly/XIhU30kAXyg

In it, the author worries about service dogs spreading zoonotic infections to unwitting shoppers, questions whether people are vaccinating their service dogs, and expresses concern about ticks and fleas.

Good grief.

How can someone worry about the spread of diseases from another species without worrying about the much more likely spread of diseases from other human beings?

Responsible service dog owners keep their animals’ vaccinations and treatments up to date, because we need our dogs to live long and healthy lives so they can continue to work for us. We keep them clean to minimize their risk to allergy sufferers and sensitive noses. We keep them under control and away from the food merchandise out of community responsibility.

I only wish all parents did the same with their children.

The letter’s writer also expressed a common misconception about Service Dogs, which we’ll address in tomorrow’s post: Four Paws on the Floor. Real rule or fake? And how to tell?

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