I had a few quick questions about the differences between these three distinctions.
From what I understand, a therapy dog is not a service dog, and therefore not entitled to go anywhere dogs aren't allowed (unless previously permitted, like hospitals and nursing homes), correct?
I also assumed the difference between a therapy dog and an ESA is that an ESA is a support animal for the handler (and also not allowed just anywhere that service dogs can co), while a therapy dog works with other people. Is that correct?
Are these laws/guidelines universal - at least in the US?
The reason I'm curious is that in my area we have a nature preserve. It's private property, so of course they can make whatever rules they want, and they do ecological research there so while they have a trail that people can walk they have very reasonable rules to be able to walk that trail - no overnight hikes, no camping, stay on the trail, don't litter, and no dogs
Obviously I don't have a problem with the rule - I totally understand it and there are so many other places I can hike with my dogs anyway. But lately they've had a major problem with people bringing their dogs into the park. They don't really have a way to police it, other than shutting down the trail to everyone or relying on volunteers. Apparently they had an issue with a man who brought his dog, and when asked to leave insisted that his dog was a "therapy dog" (exact quote - he did NOT say service dog) and that he could show papers to prove it.
I assume that means his dog was in fact not allowed to be there, but wasn't totally sure. The volunteer at the time wasn't sure either.
I don't think they can keep actual service dogs out, but frankly, the amount of people with actual service dogs who walk that trail are probably so slim it doesn't matter.
Frustrating though that people can't just follow the rules.