CHEYENNE, Wyo. (KGWN) Legislators say more and more business owners are dealing with fake service animals Something that harms people who have real ones.
House bill 114 is a layered bill. First, it establishes clear rules for people with service animals. Under the bill a service animals would be allowed into any establishment without a fiscal responsibility. If a business owner denies them entry they face a fine. The bill also establishes a misdemeanor offense for someone with a fake service animal.
Mary Flanderka works with service animals and helps those who need them. She says fake service animals harm people with real disabilities.
“It puts people with legitimate service dogs on the defensive sometimes inside public buildings.” Flanderka said, “Because of these fake service dogs, it's created this situation for those people who really don't want to be confronted.”
But how will this bill be enforced when many who actually need service animals... Don't have physical disabilities. Likewise, Wyoming law doesn't require a person to register their service animal.
“Talking to the person that has the service animal and just defining ‘is this a service animal and what tasks does it perform?’” Representative Landon Brown said, “If the business owner doesn't feel comfortable with the answers to those questions, they can contact law enforcement and law enforcement can actually determine whether this is a service animal.”
Also under the bill a person who injures or kills a service or assistance animal could spend up to 6 months in prison or a 750 dollar fine or both. The bill passed the house and is waiting to be heard in the senate.