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I am in a situation that I didn't expect, and the consequence is I am looking for a home for my dog. My mobility issues have gotten much worse, and I am looking at going into senior housing, or possibly assisted living. It will not be easy to find a place on my budget, certainly not one that allows pets, and I must think of the dog now. I am broken-hearted at the prospect of losing her, but it seems inevitable. I have someone willing to take my cat when the time comes.

 

At this point I am unable to get her out for more that bathroom-breaks, and I need to start looking for her future owner and get my own ducks in a row for a very different kind of life.

 

I have listed her on Northern California Border Collie Rescue. There are lots of people here that I would feel good about placing her with. Please look at her page and consider my little girl.

 

Thanks.

 

http://www.bcrescuenc.org/sugarfoot-owner-dog.html

 

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oh geez, Geonni. I am so sorry.

 

I will keep my eyes peeled.

 

FWIW, there are many places where I live that will let you have 1 dog, especially a well behaved one. This includes assisted livings, state subsidized housing and adult family homes (I work as a home health OT so I see a lot of folks in these situations).

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Thanks. The ones I've looked at so far that allow dogs have said small dogs OK, but a 45 lb Border Collie was not. I'll keep looking.

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Get a Canine Good Citizen and letters from references regarding her training level and behavior. That often helps bend the rules.

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Geonni - that's so very hard! I hope you can work it out and keep her... but if not I hope you find a board member who can take her.

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I'm so very sorry, Geonni. I can imagine how heartbreaking this must be for you.

 

I know it's not the same sort of situation, but I found when I was renting that if I offered an additional security deposit it opened some doors that were supposed to be closed to dogs. I don't know if this could help you, but it sure can't hurt to ask. And definitely look into the CGC if Sugarfoot doesn't already have it, and the letters of reference. Maybe even therapy dog certification if she'd qualify. Who knows, maybe a facility would consider a resident therapy dog.

 

Very best wishes for both of you.

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I'm sorry for this very sad situation. I hope you can find something that works out either with a new owner or with you if you can swing it. CGC is a great thing to have. Both of my girls have it just in case.

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I am so sorry to hear your news. I hope the suggestions above will help. Is there anyone local who wants a therapy dog so they could bring her to where you end up so you could still see her? A long shot, I know, but a suggestion just in case the opportunity should arise.

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I am sorry, hugs

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Would it be possibly to train the dog to assist with the mobility issue or some other task, get the dog certified as an assistance dog, and bring her to the new location under the Americans with Disabilities Act?

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I'm very sorry you are having to cope with the possibility of rehoming Sugarfoot. It's been clear from all your posts over several years how much you love her and how close you two are.

 

Your rescue listing gives a nice detailed and objective description of her and the pictures are great. She is a beautiful dog. Can I suggest that you add a bit about what kind of home would enjoy adding her to the family, what kinds of activities they would do with her, kind of what she would bring to the party.

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I asked the rescue to take the page down, because I'm seeing a crack of daylight here. I know my doctor would sign assistance dog papers for Sugar. I have not done it, because, frankly, she's not assistance dog material. She is well-behaved, and well-trained, but she will always be a tad spooky. Bomb-proof she is not - especially with other dogs. It has been an ethical choice not to "paper" her because of all the stuff about people who get their dogs certified just so they can take them into stores, fly free, etc. My dog has never bitten anyone - or even offered to bite - but she is far less comfortable with strangers than I would expect an assistance dog to be.

 

But it pinches a bit harder when keeping or not keeping my dog might be at stake. From a purely ethical point of view, nothing has changed. My dog is not an assistance dog. You could make a case for her being a support animal. I am very much helped by her mere presence when I am having anxiety/panic issues. I am looking into that now, as I don't know a lot about the difference between a support dog and an assistance dog, in terms of licensing her.

 

I know everyone feels that their dog is special, and would like an exception to be made for their dog, but I would like to find a way through this without breaking my heart or my ethics. Any advice would be appreciated.

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Dear Ms. Banner,

 

I feel strongly that people should not abuse those protections provided for the handicapped and have lost friends who papered their dogs so they could fly in the cabin.

 

That said:there's plenty of evidence that keeping a dog is life sustaining and many "No Dog" rules are thoughtless- designed to sooth the worries of lazy administrators and imagining the worst possible dog illtrained by the worst possible owner. You and your dog are not.

 

Ethically, there's a huge distinction between lying for minor convenience and lying to keep your dog. I would lie.

 

Donald McCaig

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Geonni,

It would tear me up to have to give up my dogs as you are now facing. I hope you can come up with a workable solution and an understanding facility. Support animals do get some consideration, and I think if your physician could provide you with a letter stating that Sugarfoot helps you through panic/anxiety attacks that could help your case without compromising your ethics. It's worth a shot at least. Please keep us posted.

 

J.

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Yep, what Donald said. I agree.

 

Research the Americans With Disabilities Act. There are 2 questions that can legally be asked of a disabled person - one of them is 'What does your dog do to help/support you?' The other I can never quite remember.

 

Wording can be confusing - people think that 'emotional support dog' and 'assistance dog' are the same thing. No. An 'assistance dog' has specific training to assist a disabled human in ways that mitigate the disability. An 'emotional support dog' is a phrase thought up by somebody. No training necessary.

 

As I understand, at this time there is no legal standard or certification for assistance dogs. That's why so many people take advantage of it, and carry their dogs into restaurants and set them on tables.

 

If I were you, I'd document how Sugarfoot assists you, and how her actions mitigate the effects of your disabilities. If you have a physician who understands and will sign a letter for you, so much the better.

 

Good luck, I hope it works out.

 

Ruth and Gibbs

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Emotional support dogs are different than service dogs. They don't have public access rights but they usually do need to be accommodated in housing situations.

 

You need to have diagnosed disability and a letter from your doctor stating that your dog (or other animal) is beneficial to your wellbeing.

 

From your posts, it really does sound like Sugarfoot could legitimately/ethically qualify as an ESA.

And it would be an answer to the ethical dilema.

 

I wish you the best in finding a situation where you won't need to give up your girl.

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It would tear me up to have to give up my dogs as you are now facing. I hope you can come up with a workable solution and an understanding facility. Support animals do get some consideration, and I think if your physician could provide you with a letter stating that Sugarfoot helps you through panic/anxiety attacks that could help your case without compromising your ethics. It's worth a shot at least. Please keep us posted.

 

I so very much agree. And there are places where no special dispensation is required - a pet is a pet. A member of my family moved to such a place in Florida, and one of the resident pets was a lab and another was a rather unruly but gentle Doberman. So I hope and pray you will find something.

 

I found this link, perhaps it will be helpful: http://www.aplaceformom.com/pet-friendly-senior-living

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Thanks so much everybody. I am very heartened by your well-wishes and helpful advice. It has renewed my courage and also made me look at things form different perspectives. It has boosted my confidence in finding a solution to my problems that will allow me to keep my family intact.

 

There's a lot of reasons I keep coming here. This is only one of them. Thanks.

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