Service Dog Laws in Ohio

My dog Messi sleeping.

The service dog laws in Ohio have some of the more unique and interesting definitions of what a service dog is, and is not, allowed to do while accompanying their disabled owner. These requirements differ somewhat from other states and emphasizes even more the importance of a service dog certification program for this animal to be properly trained in the assistance of others. The laws will be explained in general terms only and are not intended to be used as a legal document or guidebook.

Like most states, the service dog laws in Ohio afford the disabled person and his or her service dog the same right of entry to all public places and transportation on all public conveyances subject only to the same restrictions applied to everyone else. These places as listed in Ohio law, Title IX, 955.43 include hotels, all institutions of education, all places of public accommodation, amusement or resort and the aforementioned public places and transportation on public conveyances. However, additional restrictions are clearly defined within Ohio laws that are not always spelled out as concisely in other states. These are as follows:

1. The dog shall not occupy a seat on any public conveyance.

2. The dog shall be upon a leash while using the facilities of a common carrier.

3. Any dog in training to become an assistance dog shall be covered by a liability insurance policy.

To be in compliance with the third restriction placed by the service dog laws in Ohio on your pet, you will find your best opportunity in acquiring liability insurance at a competitive rate, will be to have the canine complete a service dog certification program. Service dog certification will not only allow you to save money on the required insurance coverage, but will also insure that the disabled individual the dog is assisting will realize the best possible quality of life these wonderful assistance animals can provide to them.

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