Service Animals vs. Assistance Animals: Know the Difference

Failing to understand the distinction between these two terms could result in costly and risky unintended consequences. 

If you’re like most people, you probably use the terms service animal and assistance animal interchangeably especially when discussing the recent media coverage about the person with an emotional support alligator or the peacock trying to board an airplane. If you’re a multifamily professional, not knowing the difference between these two terms could result in costly and risky unintended consequences. 

To help prevent such a scenario from happening, you simply need to know the difference between a service animal and an assistance animal. More importantly, knowing when and how to deal with each one is imperative. Understanding the differences can help ensure you don’t ask an inappropriate question that could result in inadvertently discriminating against a person with a disability or help prevent a bad actor from committing animal fraud.

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