Lyft has followed Uber in making it crystal clear that its drivers need to accommodate riders with service animals. As a driver, you cannot refuse service to someone because they are accompanied by a service animal. Uber made you agree to their service animal policy when you logged into the Driver app. Lyft sent out an email to its drivers that explained the policy.
Here’s the meat of the email:
Neither Lyft or Uber is doing anything outrageous here. It appears they’re just following federal law, specifically, the Americans with Disabilities Act. That said, I do think some people abuse the law and pretend their pet dog is their service animal, that their pet dog assists them in some way. You see people in stores with dogs all the time that are not trained service animals. I was at Home Depot a month or so ago and a young woman had a pit bull with her. The dog was not trained in any way. She could not control it. I’m sure the employees at Home Depot have been trained not to challenge anyone when they’re accompanied by a dog, no matter how ridiculous it looks.
I’m not a dog person. Not really. It’s not that I hate dogs. I just don’t like animals that bark, growl, or bite. It just so happens that dogs bark, growl, and bite. Dogs kill people all the time.
That doesn’t mean I would ever refuse a rider who was accompanied by a dog, whether it was a service animal or not a service animal. I drove an Uber passenger down to Washington D.C. a while back who was accompanied by his cocker spaniel and it was one of the best rides I ever had. The dog was a total gentleman. He didn’t bark, growl, or bite me, so I had no problems with him. If all dogs were like cocker spaniels, I would probably be a dog person.