What’s The Big Deal…

Why Can’t I call a Therapy Animal or Companion Animal a Service Animal?

Three words, three diffewent meanings. And yet so many peeps still use these terms interchangeably. But they’re not. Interchangeable me means. They mean 3 diffewent things and descwibe 3 diffewent types of animals wiff diffewent twainin’ levels and skills. It sumtimes hurts our feelings to be called therapy or companion kitties but we know peeps awe usually sayin’ it cuz they don’t know da diffewence. Mommy on da udder hand gets weally uptight ‘bout it. She sez there’s a big diffewence and it shows diswespect to those who have worked so hawd to twain to be Service animals. And dat peeps takin’ advantage of da old ADA rule by passin’ off therapy and companion animals and even pets as Service animals is what caused da ADA to change da definitions and exclude sum species, like us kitties. Altho’ we do still enjoy sum benefits, weez not as purrtected unnew da law as we once was. Isn’t dat wight mommmy?


Yes dear that’s right.


Mommy wuld you give everypawdy da definitions of a Service, Therapy and Companion Animal?

I would be happy to Dezi. Why don’t we start with Service Animals. According to the ADA website, on March 15, 2011 ONLY dogs are recognized as Service Animals under titles 2 and 3 of the ADA (Americans with Disablity Act). The rules used to read: A Service Animal is an animal(dog)that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with disabilities. After 2011 it replaces the word animal with dog. The ADA recognizes that Service animals are not PETS, but working animals. However they now only recognize dogs as such animals. The work the animal (dog) is trained to perform must be directly related to the persons disability. Animals (dogs) whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support DO NOT qualify as Service Animals under the ADA. It goes further to say: This definition does NOT affect or limit the broader definition of “Assistance Animal” under the Fair Housing Act or the broader definition of “Service Animal” under the Air Carrier Access Act. Some State and local laws have broader definitions regarding Service Animals. You should check with your local government and ordinances if you have questions with regards to accessibility or other protections and rights afforded you under the laws of your state.

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Dat’s why we be called Service Animals isn’t it mommy? Cuz weez been TRAINED to purrfurm duties diwectly welated to yous disability?


Yes it is sweety. And before 2011 Lexi and those who came before her were certified. You were tested, certified and recognized as a highly trained Service Animal as well, but the ADA dusn’t recognize you as one. We are still protected under the law and benefit from certain rules and regulations, but there are some benefits we can no longer receive. You and sis Lexi can no longer apply to be sponsored as Service animals. There are companies that sponsor Service animals for one thing. And a Sponsorship means they provide the animal with food, supplies, toys and pay all medical expenses for them. Since people with disabilities are usually on a fixed income, sponsorship is a great benefit and help.

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It’s gweat to be a Service animal mommy. Meez purroud me can help you even ifin da ADA dusn’t wecognize me.


I know baby and I really do appreciate you and your sister. Y’all are a great help to me. And I love you both very much.

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Oh mommy we luv you too. Me finks we might shuld cover da udder workin’ animals in anudder posty mommy? Me finks this might be a lot to digest and me dusn’t want anypawdy to be confused ‘bout da diffewences. What do yous fink mommy?

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I think you’re absolutely right Dezi. I think we shuld let everypawdy absorb this. It is a lot of information but we do hope to clear things up for people by the end of this series. Why don’t you list a few of the “jobs” you and Lexi perform for me so that our friends will know what kinds of things are considered “trained behaviors that qualify y’all as Service Animals”.


Oh me wuld luv to mommy. Lexi and me have been trained to drive mommys wheelchair, dial 911 fur help, give her massages, and our biggy is dat we alert mommy afur she passes out so she can get sumwhere safe and not dwop all da way to da floor and get hurt. We do hope dat yous all enjoy our series on Working animals and will keep coming back to read da whole series. Weez will cover Therapy and Companion Animals and tell sum trainin’ stowries of our own as pawrt of this series.



And ifin yous haven’t alweady entered, we have 2 pawsum give aways goin’ on wight now.

You can enter to win yous choice of PetSafe’s Pagoda fountain here.

And you can enter to win yous choice of a case of Weruva TruLuxe canned food here.

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These pawsum give aways awe pawrt of our series on hydwation and weez very gwateful to da sponsors fur allowin’ us to offer you all a chance to twy their purroducts fur yous selff. And stay tuned, we have more pawsum give aways comin’ up this mumff. And just to clear up one thing, ifin yous alweady follow meez bloggy by email, then yous not have to do it again.


Till da next time……………….Be Blest!!!


Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses


Dezi and Lexi


References: ADA


About Deziz World

My name is Deztinee. I am a Ragdoll. I was born 11/1/2009. I am a service cat along with my sisfur RaenaBelle, also a Ragdoll, for our disabled human mommy. My sisfur Raena was born 4/21/2016. In March of 2016, mommy and I had to say goodbye to my mentor Alexandra (Lexi), a black tabby born 4/29/1999. This blog is about our daily life from the kitty's point of view. We were both rescued from bad situations and our mommy raised us and trained us to be service cats. I want this blog to be interactive and get to know all of you, so comment and visit often. I will also offer advice, training tips and education when possible. Copyright © 2014 - 2019 {Audra High via Deztinee High and RaenaBelle High} All Rights Reserved All personal content (story's, poetry, etc., videos and music) are the property of the human behind Deziz World, and may not be used, copied or otherwise re-published without prior written permission/consent from the author (A. High-the human behind Deziz World). We have an amazon.com wish list and a PayPal account if you would like to help/donate to us.

Posted on July 8, 2015, in Meez Meows, Service Cats and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 26 Comments.

  1. There are definitely a lot of misconceptions about service versus therapy versus companion/emotional support animals out there. Dogs are definitely not the only animals who can and do perform services for their humans! I know you and Lexi are service cats, and I’ve also heard that birds can be service animals, too.

    I would personally love to see emotional support/companion animals get more rights/benefits. I think that unfortunately too many people just say they need an ESA when they may or may not. In my case, my depression would be much more severe without my babies, and so in cases like this, I think that ESAs should be recognized and given certain rights. I think some landlords can get a little skeptical about ESAs because some people just say they need them when they may not actually need them. I am thankful that my current place made an exception and allowed me to have two ESAs instead of just one in light of the fact that Carmine and Milita are so bonded to me and to each other.

    I could go on and on, but I won’t. That’s my two cents 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fank you fur yous input. And yous wight, dat’s why they changed da Service animal definition, so many peeps sayin’ it and it wasn’t so. Most all our neighbors here have used da Companion Animal excuse so they don’t have to pay a pet deposit of 250.00, and we fink lots of peeps do dat. Weez very glad yous was able to get Carmine and Milita boff in. Weez kinda have da same fing here. A one rule limit but since it takes 2 of us to do sum fings, mommy got an exception.

      Luv ya’

      Dezi and Lexi


  2. Kitty Cat Chronicles

    Great information, girls! Sophie is training to be a therapy cat. But we know that training isn’t anywhere near as extensive and what you girls did. It is amazing that you can do so much for your mom. What a blessing you are!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That stinks that you can’t register for sponsorship- that would be such a great help. I never knew the difference until I started reading your blog- I am glad you are educating people. I am praying for Lexi, I hope she is feeling better.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yep Ms. Ellen it duz stink, but dat’s da bweaks mommy sez. And fanks fur da purrayers fur sis lexi, she can use ”em even tho’ she be feelin’ better.

      Luv ya’

      Dezi and Lexi


  4. Mary Marchman

    Great information. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series.
    Love you all so very much. Lots of hugs and kisses.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Dang, I didn’t know most of those differences and I appreciate all the info pretty girls. Purrs to Lexi from all of us here.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. There is no certification for service animals. The ADA also recognizes miniature horse as service animals. The horses are for those who need help with mobility /low vision and there is not a dog large enough to support their weight.
    Maybe you could share a video with us of the cats driving your wheelchair. I would be interested in see it. I can pull a wheelchair but have no training on how to drive one.

    Liked by 2 people

    • There is certification, but it is voluntary and not required, which is sumfin’ dat waa’ll be talkin’ ’bout in this series. this is only one post in dat series. And while we awe aware dat miniature horses awe achowledged, da ADA definition is limited to dogs. You can see da ADA link at da bottom of da post ifin yous wuld like. Weez won;t be covewin’ all aspects as this topic is much to lawge, but we will be twyin’ to educate peeps on da difewences in da 3 classifications of “working” animals. And we will be sharin’ again, sum of our twainin’ stowries. Again they awe only fur readership enjoyment and not meant to be a twaining course. Fanks fur yous input and comment. Hope yous enjoy our series. Dat’s pawsum dat yous can help yous hooman by pullin’ their chair.

      Luv ya’

      Dezi and Lexi


  7. That is very interesting about the differences. We have worked with dogs that are trained to help blind people and they are wonderful dogs. We thought that cats could be therapy animals too by going to visit people in the hospital. Glad you can drive the mom’s chair for her.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Audra, Have you ever considered including all this information on it’s own page with a tab at the top of your blog so anybody could access it at anytime?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Too bad your Mommy didn’t bring her wheelchair to Blogpaws. TW would have paid to see you driving it. Sending Lexi more healing purrz.

    Liked by 1 person

    • MOL Awe yous sayin’ weez kulda got wich CK? Mommy wuld have lluvved to have hers chair, specially once we got there and she saw how much walkin’ she had to do. But it dusn’t fold up and wiffout a lift and twailer there’s no way to take it anywhere. 😦 Fanks fur da continued purrayers fur Lexi.

      Luv ya’

      Dezi and Lexi


  10. What a great Blog today Dezi. This is very helpful! You can do some remarkable things for your mommy. I am so impressed. Maybe you could tell us how you learned to do some of the things you do. How do you know when your mommy is going to pass out?
    Purrs and Gentle hugs Dezi, to you Lexi and your mommy! We are still praying for sweet Lexi!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fank you Pete. Weez gunna be tellin’ sum of our twainin’ stowries in this series, so purrlease stay tuned and keep comin’ back. And fank you fur da continued purrayers fur Lexi and da donation. Weez gunna be sendiin’ out Fank yous soon. Mommy just had a lot of cleanin’ to do after sissies weally bads yesfurday and so weez not had time yet.

      Luv ya’

      Dezi and Lexi


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