Service Dogs Are Working Dogs

Official service dogs on campus wear special jackets and are registered as such through the Office of Disability Services. They are the only animals allowed inside campus buildings. Other pets are prohibited inside, including so-called “comfort animals.”

Dylan Arthur and Bella look after one another

Dylan Arthur and Bella look after one another

Dylan Arthur organized the “Paws for a Cause” event to educate people about service dogs. Dylan is a senior management major who has a service dog because of his PTSD from his career as a military police officer. (Bethany Camp/Creative Services/George Mason University)

On April 3, management major Dylan Arthur organized an event on Wilkins Plaza (formerly North Plaza) entitled, “Pause for the Cause”.

Arthur, a former Marine, suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome PTSD). When he exhibits PTSD symptoms, his lab-shepherd-husky mix, named Bella, acts as an interrupter and puts a paw on Arthur, and licks his face or jumps on him.

“Anything to reel me in,” Arthur said.

Bella is clearly suited up as a certified service dog.

Dylan Arthur arranged Paws for a Cause to educate people about service dogs. Dylan is a senior management major who has a service dog because of his PTSD from his career as a military cop. (Bethany Camp/Creative Services/George Mason University)

Bella is Arthur’s constant companion and wears the right outfit to notify humans in the area that she is on the job and not a pet. But she is so cute that, frequently, passersby will stop and, without permission, seek to touch or pet the dog. This distracts Bella and makes life harder for everyone.

Arthur organized the “Pause for the Cause” event to help campus dog lovers understand the difference between various classes of animals. The event was organized to highlight the differences between dogs as pets, including comfort animals, and certified service dogs.

Certified service animals are specially trained to do their jobs. They are certified by the Mason Office of Disability Services (in SUB I). If your animals don’t meet this criteria, please keep them outside the buildings.

The complete story is here.

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