A viral tweet has provided a much-needed explanation of what you need to do if you’re approached by an unaccompanied service dog.
Melissa Hope, of Pennsylvania, tweeted the public service announcement after she suffered a nasty fall. She said: “So today I tripped. Fell flat on my face, it was awful but ultimately harmless. My service dog, however, is trained to go get an adult if I have a seizure and he assumed this was a seizure.
“I went after him after I had dusted off my jeans and my ego, and I found him trying to get the attention of a very annoyed woman. She was swatting him away and telling him to go away.”
“So I feel like I need to make this heads up — if a service dog without a person approaches you, it means the person is down and in need of help.”
She goes on: “Don’t get scared, don’t get annoyed, follow the dog! If it had been an emergency situation, I could have vomited and choked, I could have hit my head, I could have had so many things happen to me.”
Hope plans to update her service dog’s training so if the person he initially approaches fails to cooperate, he moves on to somebody more helpful.
Her tweet has been shared far and wide, garnering more than 120,000 retweets, helping to spread the message so more people know what to do if they are approached by a service dog.
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