Faking it: From Disability Placards To Service Dogs: Chronic Illness Podcast


Kyros and I heavily debated doing this episode on Faking It All About Disability Placard and Service Animal Abuse of the System. Though we are not fans of calling people out this has become such an issue in our and others lives. The abuse of the system means life is so much more difficult for those who need these services. Take a listen and let us know what you think or if you have solutions we'd love to hear from you!

People who fake having a disability


  1. Reasons why people do it
    1. Want special treatment / to get around rules
    2. Jealous of what they perceive as benefits (taking dogs with them, easier access, line skipping at Disneyland)
    3. Feel entitled
    4. Dislike something (Food) so say they have an allergy
    5. Drug seeking
    6. Miracles on flights first to enter sudden recovery in air for a sprint off
  2. How they do it
    1. “Borrow” disabled car tags
    2. Claim allergy when it is actually a preference
    3. Fake illness/ pain to get drugs
    4. Fake service animal vests
  3. Service / Support / Therapy Animals, 
    1. https://therapetic.org/faq/ 
    2. https://www.petfinder.com/animal-shelters-and-rescues/volunteering-with-dogs/service-dog-vs-therapy-dogs/
    3. Fake certification certificates online
    4. Purchase fake service animal outfits online
    5. Gets around “No Pets Allowed” rules
      1. Landlords can't even charge extra fees or a pet deposit.
      2. So long as it was never documented being aggressive and required no unreasonable accommodations. (Link is to document for landlords in Iowa re: service animals)
    6. Instant VIP
      1. Support animals fly free instead of $125-300 charge
      2. Businesses don’t have to allow support animals, but most businesses aren’t aware of the differences.
    7. There are no papers, documents, certifications, vests, tags or special IDs required for Service Dogs in the United States. Under federal law, disabled individuals accompanied by Service Dogs are allowed access to places selling goods or services of any kind, including places offering entertainment, lodging and food.
  4. Transabled
    1. What is it?
      1. Been around since the early 20th century.
      2. Originally called abasiophilia, then amputee identity disorder, body integrity identity disorder, and now finally transableism.
    2. Examples
      1. People who amputate arms or legs
      2. Poured bleach into her eyes to blind herself
  5. Effects of fakes and transabled on people with disabilities 
    1. Creates atmosphere where people with invisible disabilities are assumed to be faking it
    2. Creates distrust of service animals legitimacy
    3. Backlash against legitimate service animals because so many people fake it that businesses assume everyone is cheating.
      1. Registered therapy dogs or emotional support animals increased 1000% between 2002 and 2012 in California
      2. To take your emotional support animal on an airplane, all you need is a letter from a licensed mental health professional that’s on letterhead, signed, and less than a year old. You can buy those online for a few bucks: news investigations have found psychologists offering to sell them to otherwise undiagnosed clients. Heck, most of us could probably counterfeit one using Photoshop.
      3. Bright side: California currently has a $1,000 fine and six months in jail lined up for faking a service dog. In Florida, it's $500 and two months in jail. Other states have measures too, and in case it sounds like a slap on the wrist, that's per count.
    5. Transabled take limited resources away from people who do not have any other option.





Service animals