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11 thoughts on “Million Dollar Lawsuit: Mother of Child Mauled by an 'Emotional Support' Pit Bull at Portland Airport Sues

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  1. We live near the 2nd largest military base in the Continental US. This means that we are surrounded by veterans with special needs, my husband included. We also live in a place (eastern North Carolina) where pitbulls seem to be the rule, not the exception. Everyone seems to find it necessary to bring their “ESA” to Lowe’s and Walmart, etc etc etc. In fact, nearly everywhere we go, there’s a mauler around the corner. I’ve had people offer to let my children pet their “sweet pup”. My 4 year old knows the rules, and I snobbishly decline every time (regardless of breed, or size). I’ve taught her not to reach for any animal unless Mama says it’s okay. Anyone with a true service animal will not offer such interaction while the dog is on duty.

    That being said, I hope more lawsuits like this start to pop up. I think the stores ought to be held accountable for any bite injuries as well, because it is absolutely negligence and a liability to allow any old animal into a public area

    While I certainly understand the special needs of some veterans, as my husband suffers daily with the effects of brain damage from an IED attack in Iraq, I do not feel that one needs an ESA to pick up some milk at Walmart, and he agrees. This should be reserved for properly trained SERVICE animals performing a specific duty.

    These so-called ESAs really cheapen things for people who truly need a service dog. At least for me, it makes me skeptical of every dog I see with a “service” vest on.

    • I agree I always taught my children that if it has a mouth it can bite you. These people don’t respect the potential harm these animals can cause and they should be held 100% liable.

  2. I saw this article yesterday on a news site and bravely decided to check the comments. I was expecting the usual round of pit defenders (pitiots) but was pleasantly surprised to find that most of the comments were by people who were also sick to death of being confronted by maulers disguised as emo dogs. It was heartening to see that others are also aware of the danger and are speaking out. A nice change from the usual comments that accompany an article that concerns pit bulls.

  3. So far this year, DogsBite.org has been on fire! Keep up the good work, DBO.

  4. Great news about the lawsuit. Maybe this will encourage other airlines to ban shitbulls when it hits THEM in the wallet.
    I have another name for Emotional Support Dog- PET. It’s a pet. The term ‘service dog’ is nearly meaningless and the term ESD is utterly meaningless.

  5. Colleen, what specific rights does an ESA have? I see people always calling them service animals but they aren’t.

    Second, does anyone know what that pit bull is wearing?

    • Presuming you have a qualifying disability (or merely a fake ESA letter), you can live with an ESA in apartments/housing where pets are not allowed. If pets are allowed, I believe landlords cannot charge ESA owners pet fees. A person can have multiple ESAs. So in a no pet rental building, a person can have three ESA pit bulls and the landlord can do nothing. ESAs fall under the Fair Housing Act and Air Carriers Access Act only. Airlines have to accommodate them too, up to a point. Most of them now limit ESAs to one per passenger.

        • No. Short stays are not covered under Fair Housing Act. So, one can travel by air with an ESA, but can only stay at a pet friendly hotel, which there are many…

  6. I wonder how people lived for tens of thousands of years without “emotional support dogs”.
    Maybe because they had purposeful lives, full of hard work, worship, and taking care of their large families.
    These dogs should rather be called “Dogs that unmarried, childless, decadent, depressed middle-aged women use to satisfy their need for a strong leader and kids in their life”.
    These women need to marry and start families, then they won’t need the stupid dogs.

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