What to do if a service dog approaches you without its owner


Service dogs and guide dogs often share a special relationship with their owners.

Whether it’s opening or closing doors, retrieving things from the ground, picking things off shelves, guiding a wheelchair, turning lights off and on, or simply ensuring the path ahead is safe, a service dog is an invaluable companion for people less able than others.

But what happens if you come into contact with a service dog who doesn’t appear to have an owner nearby? The immediate thought process might be that it has been abandoned or turned loose.

However, there’s likely a reason they’re on their own, and it can mean the difference between life and death…

Thanks to a woman named Melissa Hope, more people are able to learn a vital piece of information. We would encourage you to share this article, so you can raise awareness about what to do if a lone service dog approaches you.

So, what do you do? Well, we’ll explain…

This information was originally posted on Tumblr, and has since been distributed widely.

“If a service dog without a person approaches you, it means that the person is down and in need of help.”
One day, the author of the Tumblr post tripped up and fell flat on their face. Despite not being seriously hurt, the owner’s service dog immediately leapt into action and ran off looking for another adult to alert – just as it was trained to do.

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