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When You Meet a Person Using a Service Dog

  • You can expect to see Guide Dog teams just about anywhere.  The Federal   Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and State laws explicitly grant the right of access everywhere the public is allowed (i.e., restaurants, airplanes, offices, buses, stores, movie theaters, etc.). 
  • Allow a service animal to accompany the partner at all times and everywhere on campus except where service animals are specifically prohibited.
  • Do not pet a service animal.  Petting a service animal when the animal is working distracts the animal from the task at hand.
  • Speak to the person – not the dog!  Some guide dog handlers may allow petting, but always ask first.  If they decline, please respect their wishes.
  • Do not feed a service animal.
  • Do not deliberately startle a service animal.
  • Never grab the harness or leash from the handler – you can disorient and confuse the team.  If the handler looks like he/she needs help, offer your assistance and take your cue from their response.
  • Don’t forget Guide Dog Teams have the right of way!


*Guide Dogs of America/Access-etiquette