Guys, the status and treatment of ESAs (Emotional Support Animals) has been nagging at me for a while and I really need to talk about it. Within a week of brining Benny home, my mom and I knew that we had to register him as an ESA. His mild manner paired with his ability to bring not only me, but also everyone around him, so much joy and ease, made the decision so clear (and now he’s undergoing proper training). Until this point, no amount of drugs, meditation, yoga, acupuncture, or therapy had done as much to untangle the trauma I bear from my last job and 4 years of accumulated loss. And yet, there are so many places he can’t go.
What am I trying to say? The definition of a Service Dog has got to change. While ESAs are approved for access by the Department of Health in the state of Rhode Island, they are not considered services animals, leaving their access up to the discretion of individual proprietors. While some lenient business owners would luckily disagree with this definition, the distinction essentially prioritizes people with physical limitations over people with emotional ones. And by now, I hope that most of us are aware that there is still a blatant stigma around mental health in this country.
Every time I go to the market and see a sign that reads, “DOGS FOR PEOPLE WITH PHYSICAL DISABILITIES ONLY” it minimizes everything I’ve been through. Would you like to sit in on a few sessions with my psychiatrist AND therapist? Well, it actually wouldn’t matter because it’s not for anyone to speculate or judge at all. When you see someone with an ESA, you need to believe them. It’s time that we start taking mental health seriously. There are so many ways, big and small, which express a lack of understanding and sincerity around psychology, and that hurts. #bestwoof
#LoveYourPetDay more like Love My Cinnamon Roll Sugar Bear every single day ❤️
1 612 minutes ago
Today is as cold as as that day my hoomans decided to put me in this white stuff #tbt
1 813 minutes ago
Happy tongue out Tuesday! We got snow in Minnesota yesterday and we are loving the pretty wonderland look again ❄️ don’t get me wrong we can’t wait for warmer weather but muddy melting snow is never pretty 🙈 #tongueouttuesday
The first time Leonardo met Annabelle, he was more interested in the cat 😹
Annabelle has been home just a little over a week and things are going really well. Leonardo isn’t the most playful dog but he will often initiate play with her and they love to bite each other’s floof. They are both learning each other’s limits and know when to stop and settle down. We couldn’t have asked for a better first week!