This picture is from last month when I was at Philadelphia International Airport. The woman's dog was straining at the leash, wouldn't settle down, and displayed none of the calm and well-trained behavior of a bonafide service animal. I point this out because a true service animal is the only kind that should be allowed in an airport not secured inside a carrier at all times. Once at Newark Liberty International Airport I got into a conversation with an agent at an airline ticket counter who I saw shaking his head at a similar scene. I asked if it bothered him. He said he sees this every day and it's not allowed, but that airline employees aren't supposed to handle it. Airport security is supposed to tell people they can't have their common pets walking around on leashes, but that they never bother.

And no wonder. With all the selfish jerks in the world who insist on passing off their ordinary pet dogs as comfort animals, that great gray in-between, no one wants to challenge them. Rarely do I see a scenario like this that ends well. I've seen children jumped on. I've seen dogs urinate in restaurants. Twice now in recent weeks I've seen these self-indulgent types walking their dogs in grocery stores. Once in the produce section where the dog was sniffing and licking the produce uncorrected by its owner. Absolutely disgusting and clearly in violation of health codes. Another time a ratty blanket was laid down inside a shopping cart with a mangy dog lying on top it. I felt bad for whoever used that cart next if they happened to be allergic.

Airport security does nothing. Grocery store managers do nothing. All in the name of not wanting to cause a scene. We should all start speaking up more. If we don't, this only increases. Better yet, how about something that will never happen? How about people who own ordinary pets stop pretending like these are their children? How about people who own dogs realize these aren't little humans to be constantly in their company even in inappropriate and illegal situations? How about they stop pretending they can't function without them?

If they won't, how about we enforce the law?

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