At Oral and Facial Surgery, we are committed to providing quality care to all of our patients, including those who rely on service animals. Your service animal is always welcome at our practice. We understand the important role that these animals play in the lives of their owners, and we are committed to providing a safe and welcoming environment for all of our patients and their furry family members. For more information, please see below some of the rules we have in place for patient safety when it comes to service animals.
What Qualifies as a Service Animal?
A service animal is a dog that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability. Service animals are not pets but rather working animals that provide tangible assistance to their owners. There are two main types of service animals: those that assist with physical tasks and those that provide emotional support. Physical task assistance may include such things as helping a blind person navigate their surroundings, picking up dropped items, or pulling a wheelchair.
Animals that provide emotional support, but have not been specifically trained to perform a task, do not qualify as service animals under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). These include animals that are commonly referred to as “therapy animals” or “emotional support animals.”
What are the Rules for Bringing in my Service Animal?
- Some of our staff members may have allergies or other sensitivities to animals. To ensure the comfort of all of our patients and staff, we ask that you please inform us in advance if you will be bringing a service animal with you to your appointment. This will allow us to make any necessary accommodations.
- Service animals must be well-behaved, vaccinated, and under the control of their owner at all times. They should not be allowed to roam free, and should always be on a leash unless they are performing a task that requires them to be off-leash. All waste generated by the service animal must be immediately cleaned up by the owner.
Please ensure that you bring food and water for your service animal, as well as plastic bags for waste and any medicine your service animal might require during your visit with us.
- As a service animal owner, it is your responsibility to ensure that your animal is well-behaved and does not pose a danger to others. If your service animal is not well behaved and becomes a threat to other patients, you may be asked to leave the facility.
- Service animals are not permitted in certain patient care areas, such as operating rooms. You are responsible for watching over your service animal to ensure it remains with you or a designated care taker at all times.
If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to give us a call.