Veteran, service dog refused service at Oxford, Mass. diner

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August 26, 2013, 6:47 pm
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(NECN: Katelyn Tivnan) - For James Glaser and his dog, Jack, a quick lunch at Big I's in Oxford, Mass. took a much different turn.

"My feet just got into the restaurant and I 'hear get that F-ing fake service dog out of my restaurant,'" said Iraq veteran James Glaser.

Glaser suffers from severe PTSD. Jack is a trained service dog with the papers to prove it.

But Glaser says even after showing his certification, the owner still wouldn't let them in.

"Just the fact he did it in public, I never felt so belittled in my life," said Glaser.

"This is not a needs dog to me," said owner Russell Ireland. "He did not come in with a harness. There's no muzzle on it."

Ireland stands by his decision to not let Glaser bring Jack into the diner.

Jack did go inside inside once before, but Ireland says he wasn't happy then either.

"I watched them feed the dog off the plate that you're going to use next," said Ireland. "After it gets washed, of course. But still, a dog ate off it."

Glaser called police, who also explained to Ireland the dog is allowed inside.

According to the American Disabilities Act, a PTSD dog is considered a service dog and is allowed anywhere their owner goes.

Glaser hopes that will be better understood now.

"Twenty-one years in the military, nine years away from my family, being deployed, defending his right to own that restaurant," said Glaser.

Ireland wishes he handled the situation better.

"I didn't say anything last time he was in, so it was partially my fault," said Ireland. "I admit this, I overreacted, granted, I'm only human."

Tags: massachusetts, Worcester, Worcester News Tonight, Katelyn Tivnan, Oxford, Big I's, James Glaser, Russell Ireland
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