Bill Targeting Fake Service Dogs Becomes Law In Hawaii

A bill targeting fake service dogs has become law in Hawaii.  However, to showcase how contentious this type of debate can be, the law has gone into effect WITHOUT the Governor's signature.  By refusing to veto it but not sign it, Governor David Ige allows it to become law.

We've talked about this problem on the show and Iowa guests have told me it is a problem in our state.

People can pass their dogs as service animals by going online and ordering a service dog certificate, vest or ID badge with little to no proof of authenticity.

Because there are owners who don't like to leave home without their dog, I've seen dogs lunging at people in local parks, restaurants, and stores in a manner that suggests that the dog has no training.

A second issue in Iowa -  and across the country - is the "comfort animal."  A landlord joined me on the show to suggest that pet owners are getting around a "no pets" policy in a building by maintaining that their pet is a "comfort animal."  With little or no regulation of comfort animals, landlords find it difficult to turn the potential renter away for fear of being accused of discrimination.

And that's the problem with the Hawaii law -  there's a penalty but very little means to enforce it.

The Hawaii law threatens handlers of fake service dogs with a fine between $100 and $500.

But because there's s no official US registry and service animals are not required to wear special vests, collars or harnesses, enforcement is a problem.

Another challenge is the limited questions one may ask under the Americans With Disabilities Act.

I consider myself a small government conservative, but isn't it time some national policy or regulation is created?

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