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Lost your dog? Find a lost or injured animal? Here are important contact numbers in Santa Fe and Santa Fe County:
In the city limits, Animal Services is at 955-2701. On weekends and holidays, call SFPD dispatch at 955-2700.
In the county, Animal Control is at 992-1626. On weekends and holidays, call Sheriff's dispatch at 428-3720.
Still unsure about what to do to find your lost pet? Read these tips put together by Scoop member Julie.
Suspect an animal might be suffering from abuse? Call the toll-free statewide hot line for reporting extreme cruelty to animals at 1-877-548-6263.
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Animal Protection of New Mexico
Animal Shelter Tips Blog
All Creatures Memorials
Best Friends Animal Sancturary
Bridging the Worlds Animal Sanctuary
Cat Spay of Santa Fe
City of Santa Fe Animal Services
Desert Paws - news from Cochiti Lake
New Mexico House Rabbit Society
New Mexico Independent Border Collie Rescue
New Mexico Mustang and Burro Association
Pet Loss Support Page
Santa Fe Border Collie Club
Santa Fe Animal Shelter and Humane Society
Santa Fe Dog Park blog
Save the Chimps
Shaking Wind Ranch
Southwest Llama Rescue
The Wildlife Center
By Dennis J. Carroll/For The New Mexican
Though some of the laws covering service animals are a little ambiguous, business owners have a right to ask customers who bring their dogs into stores and restaurants whether they are trained and meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, according to experts who spoke in Santa Fe last week.
Whether it’s a matter of determining the rules for just what constitutes a “service animal” or assessing how much a person can be questioned about their disability, the laws governing service animals are not always well understood, said James Jackson, CEO of Disability Rights New Mexico, and Ellen Prines of the Disability Coalition.
The two outlined the dos and don’ts of the 1990 federal legislation in a presentation Thursday to a group at the Fort Marcy Recreation Center.
Jackson said there is considerable “give and take” in the law, but “there are some areas where it is just a little fuzzy” regarding the responsibilities of business owners and those with a service animal. He said a New Mexico law, the New Mexico Service Animal Act, has provisions similar to the federal legislation.
Under the ADA, only dogs and in rare cases miniature horses, may be used as service animals. In addition, they must have been trained to perform specific tasks for the disabled person. Such tasks could include guiding a blind person, steadying a person with mobility problems, picking up items or even alerting handlers to an impending seizure.
Animals considered “comfort” animals, even if it is a dog, that provide emotional or therapeutic support for their handlers, are not provided the law’s protections — and can be barred from the business.
The difference that disqualifies a comfort animal as a service animal, Jackson said, is that they have not been trained to perform a specific task.
“A dog that just helps calm a person … for better or worse, that does not meet the definition of a service dog,” he said.
“Just because your animal is kind of looking out for you does not make it a service animal,” he added.
Prines said a trained service dog can accompany its handler into any establishment serving the public, including restaurants and other businesses that normally bar animals.
“If a human would be able to go there, then the service animal can go there,” Prines said. That includes areas where food is prepared or eaten.
However, she said, that does not mean that the dog “can just wander around loose.” It must be under the control of the handler at all times.
The two also outlined other responsibilities of the handler: The dog must be housebroken, and the animal must not bark repeatedly or interfere with the actions of customers or business staff. Service dogs may also be barred from sitting on chairs or other furniture.
If the dog misbehaves, the handler must remove it from the business if requested, Prines said. However, the person may return without the dog.
Business owners and staff are restricted in what they can ask the handler if there is some doubt as to the dog’s purpose. They may ask whether the dog is needed due to a disability but may not inquire as to the nature of the disability. Also, they may ask what task the dog is trained to do.
The business staff cannot, however, ask for proof of the disability or for proof that the dog is trained. Instead, they must accept the handler’s assurances, according to the law.
Jackson noted the Americans With Disabilities Act does not require the business to alter its regular practices to accommodate the dog and it may be refused for legitimate safety reasons, but not because of unprovoked fear or allergies.
Prines also noted ADA guidelines for service animals in hotels and medical facilities. Generally, hotels must relax standard pet rules and fees for a service dog, but can charge for any damage caused by the animal. Hospitals must allow service dogs in patient rooms and other areas open to the public, but can exclude the dog from areas where a sterile environment could be compromised.
The dos and don’ts of service animals
Disability Rights New Mexico offers several general guidelines for service animals based on the Americans With Disabilities Act. They include:
• Only appropriately trained dogs, or in rare cases miniature horses, can be used as personal service animals. They must perform tasks related to the person’s disability.
• Comfort or therapy animals that provide emotional support for the handler are not considered service animals and are not covered by the disabilities act.
• The animal must be under the control of its handler at all times, and the person is responsible for caring for and supervising the animal.
• The animals are not required to wear a vest, ID tags or a specific harness.
• In a restaurant or other businesses, the dog must be allowed to accompany its handler anywhere the general public can go, but can be barred from sitting on chairs and furniture.
• Businesses are not required to alter their regular practices to accommodate a service animal and may exclude a dog for legitimate safety reasons or if the handler cannot control the dog.
u• Business owners or workers may ask the person what tasks the dog performs but may not inquire about the specifics of a disability.
For information on service-animal regulations for businesses, contact Disability Rights New Mexico at 800 432-4682 or visit the group’s webpage at www.drnm.org.
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HELP! Our 14 year old dog got out of our yard on East Barcelona road without her collar on. She is a medium size, 40 lb., orange, short haired mutt with a little black on the tip of her tail. She is partially deaf and is extremely difficult to catch. She was a rescue and is extremely smart and wary. You can not catch her with food. If you lunge for her she will only run away. Only luring her in to a fenced in area with the help of another dog will catch her. She will also likely be thirsty,…Continue
Posted by Sarah Spengler on January 15, 2018 at 10:08pm
Pacheco Park hosts dog party
Businesses at Pacheco Park are hosting a progressive dinner, showroom walk and dog party to support the local animal shelter.
More than 20 businesses at the Design District, 1512 Pacheco St., are taking part in the second annual Bark at the Park event. It will be held 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 21.
Park merchants will be offering appetizers for both humans and dogs and a chance to enter individual raffles at each…Continue
Posted by Ben Swan on September 21, 2017 at 10:43am
I was away from home on May 9, when we had that nasty storm. When my dogsitter arrived in the morning, my red heeler Sage in her panic had tried to dig a hole through my living room door and finally pried open the panel on the dog door, and climbed over or pushed through the 5 ft high fence. When I returned the next day, I started the search.
I found really good suggestions for finding and approaching a lost dog on MissingPetPartnership.com. I have contacted the shelters and vets,…Continue
Posted by Peggy Powers on July 21, 2017 at 10:57am
Police: Owners can be cited for leaving pets in hot cars
Dozens of reports of dogs left in hot cars this summer have prompted the Santa Fe Police Department to remind people the practice is dangerous and illegal.
Hundreds of pets die each year from heat exhaustion because they are left in parked vehicles, said spokesman Greg Gurule of the Santa Fe Police Department. He said the city’s Animal Services Division averages 300 calls for welfare checks for…Continue
Posted by Ben Swan on July 20, 2017 at 9:53am
When searching for a pet sitter for your fur baby and your peace of mind consider to check this and Google reviews for local professional pet sitting companies.Continue
Posted by Pet Angel Irina on July 5, 2017 at 4:42pm