Delaware Service Dog Laws

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Definitions

Under 9 Del.C. § 916, “Unauthorized acts against a service dog; penalties”:

“Service dog” means any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including, but not limited to, guiding individuals with impaired vision, alerting individuals with impaired hearing to intruders or sounds, providing minimal protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, or fetching dropped items.

In chapter on “Equal Accommodations”

6 Del.C. § 4502

Support animal means any animal individually trained to do work or perform tasks to meet the requirementsof a person with a physical disability, including, but not limited to, minimal protection work, rescue work, pulling a wheelchair or fetching dropped items.

Accommodation Law

Under chapter on Commission for the Blind:

Any person who by reason of loss or impairment of eyesight or hearing is accompanied a “seeing eye dog,” is entitled to the full and equal accommodations and shall be entitled to take the dog into such conveyances and places.

Deprivation of this right results in a fine of not more than $100, or be imprisoned for a period not exceeding 3 months, or both.

31 Del.C. § 2117

Under chapter on Equal Accommodations:

No person being the owner, lessee, proprietor, manager, director, supervisor, superintendent, agent or employee of any place of public accommodation, shall directly or indirectly refuse, withhold from or deny to any person, on account of disability any of the accommodations, facilities, advantages or privileges thereof. For the purpose of training support animals to be used by persons with disabilities, all trainers and their support animals shall be included within those covered by this subsection (§ 4504). Complaints is sent to State Human Relations Commission where civil penalty can range from $5,000 to $25,000 depending on how many prior discriminatory public accommodations practice have occurred.

6 Del.C. § 4504

Harassment of/Interference with Service Dogs

No person shallintentionally interfere with the use of a service dog by obstructing, intimidating or otherwise jeopardizing the safety of the user or animal (class B misdemeanor).

No person shallintentionally injure or disable a service dog that is being used by its owner or the officer teamed with the dog (class A misdemeanor).

No person shallintentionally kill a service dog owned by a private person or agency (class D felony).

No person shallintentionally steal, take or wrongfully obtain a service dog owned by a private person or agency (class E felony).

DE ST TI 9 § 916

Driving Law

Every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian upon any roadway and shall give warning by sounding the horn when necessary and shall exercise proper precaution upon observing a person wholly or partially blind, accompanied by a guide dog, upon a roadway.

DE ST TI 21 § 4144

Licensing Law

The license fee set by the county pursuant to subsection (a) of this section shall not be required to be paid when the dog is one which qualifies as a seeing eye, lead or guide dog or as a dog which has previously served in a branch of the United States armed forces. The county shall issue either a metal license tag or an alternative method for identification in accordance with subsection (b) of this section to such persons without the necessity of the payment of the dog license fee.

DE ST TI 9 § 902