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Cruising With A Service Dog....everything You Ever Wanted To Know!

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Isn't it funny how these amazing animals, with their phenomenal work ethics, can have such "weird and personal behaviors", when it comes to toileting or playing.

In my office Brenda has her exact space to either lay in her "plush/lambs wool" bed or her "doggy crate." Of course, there's no door on her crate and I've installed a furry/plushy rug in it, so she's so comfortable (this dog was trained and lived on concrete floors for almost 2 years! Until I came into her life!)

Then I take her to the bathroom which is located in back of our offices. It's a huge, grass lawn with a "dinky" little (just a baby) maple tree in it. She must and I mean MUST pooh under this tree. It's so funny, she weighs twice as much as this "twiggy" little tree...but, she staked it out (it has hardly grown in the past few years) and, that's where she does her "circle" thing and her business!

I can just picture your little dog sitting in one of those box's; making it's claim on it and then finally deciding to initiate it!

Gotta love their brains and how they reason things out!!!!!! ;)

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That's funny that yours circles in the same spot (is it like a slowish spin? That's what I'm picturing when you say what she does).

 

Mine has to sniff around to find just the right spot. Occassionally, she'll squat in a spot she just sniffed out but then get up a split second later, deciding that nope, that wasn't the right spot, LOL. She'll take a few steps (while sniffing again) and then really go. So weird!

 

I'm hoping that on the cruise ship she won't do what my late cat used to do in her litter box: squat fully in the box, but so the butt is so close to the edge that the poop falls out of the box! Boy was that annoying to clean up!! :p

 

... And who ever thought we'd be sitting here on a cruise board talking about dog pottying idiosyncrasies?! LOL!!

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Quam: You are so right! It does seem funny to talk about this...but, it's a fact based on such reality, that you'd have to see her to believe her.

She doesn't quite do a spin, but if she sped up her circles it would be!

And, she does exactly what yours does; she'll sniff out the spot; do her circles; squat down and then (while still squatting) move herself to another spot.

On a cruise, she basically does the same thing but in a smaller area. She has NEVER missed laying her "stuff" inside the box!

If people are walking by as she's doing her "Thing" I simply tell them that she's a "plumbing inspector" looking for the "perfect toilet!"

God bless her! I hope she lives a long and healthy life and keeps me and others in stitches, with her toilet habits! ;)

I always keep her "clean up" baggies in her zippered pocket of her service vest and if they have a trash diposal unit next to your box, I place it in. If they don't supply me with one, I simply tie a good knot in the bag and place it outside of the box. The next time I return, it's been picked up by the "clean-up fairies!" :p

Not all cruse lines supply a trash container (they're afraid people will drop their lit cigerettes in it!)

I took Brenda for a Vet check yesterday and told the doctor how much I find myself talking to Brenda and just laying beside her and kissing her face.....I couldn't help but tear-up and so did the doctor!

She shared a story about a woman who can't fall asleep unless she is laying next to her chocolate lab. This dog is not a service dog so the woman suffers from complete exhaustion, everytime she goes on vacation.

I don't have this issue but then again I don't have to. Brenda goes wherever I go. Aren't we lucky!

Before I got her, I always felt so "down" and sorry for myself, since she's been in my life.....I'm soaring! ;)

Have a wonderful cruise with your working buddy!

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My little service dog is doing double duty lately. My elderly mother has come to live with us. She is suffering with severe arthritis in her spine and has since become very depressed. Poor Valentine sometime doesn't know who to take care of. She will climb up with my mom and cuddle and let my mom kiss on her and such. I've really noticed it helps my mom's state of mind. I never do understand why some people question this side of a dog's service.:confused: I'm just glad that she is always willing to help.

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Valentin'e Mom: Isn't that wonderful!!!!! What a blessed little being!

They're sense of our needs is remarkable. :)

My husband suffers from osteoarthritis and severe bouts of depression. He is sometimes delegated to a wheelchair. When I get home from work Brenda (who has already served a full day of work with me), will immediatly push open the door and run to "PaPa" to check on him. (He's retired and can, usually, be found sitting in his recliner!)

She will check to see if he's awake or asleep and she'll lay at his feet. She started doing this, on her own, about 4 years ago. He will lower his arm to touch her head and a BIG SMILE comes over his face. She will then sit up and place her head on his lap. It's such a beautiful sight and he truly looks forward to her arrival every evening.

She, definetly serves two masters. I don't know how she figures this out, she just does.

Your mother's spirits are being lifted by Valentine and hopefully so will her pain!

You have a full plate, my dear. I wish you well!

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Thank you all so much for the wonderful information you have given regarding cruising with service dogs. My son (age 10) has a service dog and we have been contemplating taking another cruise, our last cruise was before he received "Twister." The potty box was and still is my main concern, as Twister hovers and walks at the same time. It would take some training in to "contain" her to a 4x4 box. LOL. Anyway, this has given us more information to think about. Also for those that have cruised to Alaska with a service animal, are the excursions wheelchair accessible?

 

~Carol

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And, she does exactly what yours does; she'll sniff out the spot; do her circles; squat down and then (while still squatting) move herself to another spot.

Haha, that's funny that she moves while still squatting! Mine doesn't, she gets up if she chooses a different pee spot. Sometimes while pooping she'll take a step or two while still doing a bit of a squat. I wonder what dogs think of us, who sit still while doing our business (and do it indoors, of all things)?! :p

 

 

I took Brenda for a Vet check yesterday and told the doctor how much I find myself talking to Brenda and just laying beside her and kissing her face.....I couldn't help but tear-up and so did the doctor!

They're so easy to love, ain't so?! I love to love on my dog. And, yeah, I talk to her all the time - but in public when I'm talking to myself (i.e. trying to find an item in a store), it really helps 'cause then ppl just think I'm talking to her instead of looking at me like I'm crazy! :D :p So, now when I'm aware I'm talking out loud, I direct my questions and thoughts to her instead of myself. ;)

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Question for those of you who have cruised with your SD before:

 

When you enter the different countries, do you handle the dog papers (i.e. health certificates, import permits, etc.) with the country yourself or does the ship do this for you when they handle all the other stuff for the passengers with the country?

 

I've only done international by plane, so have handled the papers myself, obviously.

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Quam: We are right in the middle of our "paper work" for our cruise on September 29th, on the Golden Princess. We will be taking Brenda to the Mexican Riviera. Although, she has done this trip 6 times before (once on the Diamond Princess and on other lines), we have to literally start from scratch.

 

The Fleet Medical Department of Princess Cruise Lines (Barbara Quam, Medical Coordinator - 661.753.2672 (Fax) 661.753.1303 or bquam@prinesscruises.com) has requested that we sign a full disclaimer about our responsibilities; and eleviating Princess from any all liability or expense. This is very common. And, in answer to your question she further states:

The Fleet Medical Department does not track the specific regulations

regarding bringing animals into the countries to which the ship will be in port. It is the responsibility of the passenger to contact the Port Agents in the countries in which they will be disembarking to determine specific policies and possible permits that may be required. Please contact the Shore Operations Department by fax: 661.753.0163.

I hope the above is somewhat helpful. Although, you might not be cruising on Princess...It's pretty much standard-wide, in terms of requirements for service dogs.

WHAT HAS BEEN ASKED FOR:

1. RABIES INFORMATION (Expiration Date;Tag#;Serial #;Type of Vaccine)

2. RABIES VACC. CERT.(This Cert. has all the info. of the Vet & the VACC)

3. ANIMAL LICENSE (from the city in which you live.)

4. STATE DEPT. OF FOOD AND AGRICULTURE CERT. (from your vet.)

5. DOGS PERMIT/LICENSE WITH NUMBER (from training/service agency.)

6. YOUR PASSPORT/DRIVERS LICENSE

Along with any forms (from cruise line), I additionally have been requested to send the above information. I also enclose information about dining requirements and potty box requests.

I hope some of this helps!

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The Fleet Medical Department does not track the specific regulations

regarding bringing animals into the countries to which the ship will be in port. It is the responsibility of the passenger to contact the Port Agents in the countries in which they will be disembarking to determine specific policies and possible permits that may be required. Please contact the Shore Operations Department by fax: 661.753.0163.

 

I hope the above is somewhat helpful. Although, you might not be cruising on Princess...It's pretty much standard-wide, in terms of requirements for service dogs.

Yes, but I mean when you get off the boat - do you stop and show the paperwork to the country yourself? Or does the ship do that for you when they handle the stuff for getting all the passengers cleared?

 

WHAT HAS BEEN ASKED FOR:

1. RABIES INFORMATION (Expiration Date;Tag#;Serial #;Type of Vaccine)

2. RABIES VACC. CERT.(This Cert. has all the info. of the Vet & the VACC)

3. ANIMAL LICENSE (from the city in which you live.)

I wonder what they do for ppl whose cities/counties don't have licenses? Glad RCCL didn't ask me for one, since my place of residence only has rabies tags, not licenses (we kill two birds with one stone - it makes sense to!).

4. STATE DEPT. OF FOOD AND AGRICULTURE CERT. (from your vet.)

Do you mean the health certificate? RCCL only asks for any import permits that may be needed to enter some countries. They don't need copies of the health certificates (which is helpful, since they're gotten in the rush of leaving and all).

5. DOGS PERMIT/LICENSE WITH NUMBER (from training/service agency.)

There's no such thing (they can call it what they want, but it isn't anything official like a real permit or license from the gov't) and it is illegal to ask for a certification, since it isn't required by law. RCCL also asks for certification.

6. YOUR PASSPORT/DRIVERS LICENSE

My group cruise director asked everybody to send copies of their passport picture page in, so I assume that's for RCCL - but it could just be for the TA to verify everything is spelled right and all on the final docs. She didn't say. No request for a license, though.

 

Along with any forms (from cruise line), I additionally have been requested to send the above information. I also enclose information about dining requirements and potty box requests.

 

I hope some of this helps!

 

 

RCCL had a one-page "form" saying they will provide a potty box, asking if I needed Braille menus or Braille daily newsletters or had a service dog. It outlined a few bullet points (i.e. dog can only potty in the potty box and nowhere else on the ship [duh! :rolleyes: ], what info. they need on the dog, that supplies must be delivered to the pier X amount of time before the cruise launches off, etc.) and then had a place to sign and date it. Very simple.

 

They also asked for vaccination info. (vet records). Everything must be sent in by two weeks prior to sailing.

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When we got off the ship in Ixtapa and in Acapulco the ship had given Brenda's Doc's to Custom's. I carry a copy of everything, along with my Passport, just in case I'm asked again, while off the ship and when re-boarding.

In Los Angeles and Ventura counties a "City Dog License" is needed. I'm not sure about other counties within the State of California. Service dogs do not have to pay the fee but must be licensed by the city, anyway!

Usually, your dogs working vest will get you both into most public arenas. I have a "Permit" (It states: "This specially trained Canine Team is Hereby entitled to all rights, privileges and access to common carriers or public accommodations as provided by law") it has a Permit Number, her Tatoo number and a picture of her and me and the ADA Rules/Regulations as to admittance rights, on the back. I have used this"Permit" exactly 3 times in the past 5 years. It really drove the "point" home when I was asked to leave the lobby of a hotel and I "whipped" it out. It really leaves no question in anyone's mind! It's great for cruising and travel in general!

 

Every service dog org. who trains, should have some sort of "Permit" that the Graduate Team can use. It just simplifies things for everyone and makes for an easier journey.

 

Proof off all Vaccinations and your dogs good health, for travel, is gotten upon completion of the Vet Exam. The State of California Department of Food and Agricultural Certificate (movement of small animals from one country to another) was only requested by NCL....no other cruiseline has asked for this. It shows proof of Vaccination and use of Heartguard.

Quam, there's a lot of duplication, when it comes to proof required by the public...I'm sure your used to this, by now! :) Or, at least have acquired a thicker skin for those who ask, over and over again!

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When we got off the ship in Ixtapa and in Acapulco the ship had given Brenda's Doc's to Custom's. I carry a copy of everything, along with my Passport, just in case I'm asked again, while off the ship and when re-boarding.

So the ship handles it, then. When did you give them the docs - when you checked in or boarded the ship for the first time?

Yeah, I make too many copies of the needed papers and other papers that aren't required but may come in handy (and they have! My vet forgot to write down on the health certificate that the rabies was the three-year, but I had no problems since I had the rabies certificate with me which, of course, has that info. on it).

 

 

Usually, your dogs working vest will get you both into most public arenas. I have a "Permit" (It states: "This specially trained Canine Team is Hereby entitled to all rights, privileges and access to common carriers or public accommodations as provided by law") it has a Permit Number, her Tatoo number and a picture of her and me and the ADA Rules/Regulations as to admittance rights, on the back. I have used this"Permit" exactly 3 times in the past 5 years. It really drove the "point" home when I was asked to leave the lobby of a hotel and I "whipped" it out. It really leaves no question in anyone's mind! It's great for cruising and travel in general!

Please remember that when you flash an ID card to a business, it may teach them that every team has one and they will refuse access to future teams that go there without one! Businesses need to learn the law, which includes never requiring an ID card or certification (neither of which are required by federal law). If you flash a card, it only makes access harder for those who either don't have a card or know not to flash it for access.

In countries that don't have access laws, you may need to use it and that's okay.

 

Every service dog org. who trains, should have some sort of "Permit" that the Graduate Team can use. It just simplifies things for everyone and makes for an easier journey.

Any card or ID given by a service dog organization or trainer is not a "permit", as there is no such thing in the US. And, like I said above, flashing such only makes things harder for those who don't have a card (either at all or with them at the time) and/or who know that it isn't a good idea to ever show it to gain access to a place that is under the ADA or ACAA.

You should join at least one online service dog user group - there are many to choose from. They are really great to learn from and to vent in and to just talk about SDs in general. I think you'd have a good time!

 

Proof off all Vaccinations and your dogs good health, for travel, is gotten upon completion of the Vet Exam. The State of California Department of Food and Agricultural Certificate (movement of small animals from one country to another) was only requested by NCL....no other cruiseline has asked for this. It shows proof of Vaccination and use of Heartguard.

Yes, I know this. I was just asking if you meant the health certificate by the title of that or if it was something else NCL asked you for. I don't recall the actual name of the thing (plus I'm not in CA, so it'd prob'ly be different), but figured that was the health certificate.

 

Quam, there's a lot of duplication, when it comes to proof required by the public...I'm sure your used to this, by now! :) Or, at least have acquired a thicker skin for those who ask, over and over again!

 

I very rarely have an access challenge, but when I do, it is just about insisting that the laws are the laws and not caving into things that go against the laws (i.e. telling them your disability, showing ID/certification, etc.). Most of the time, the only questions I get are, "What breed is that?" "What's his/her name?" (usually "his", despite the hot pink collar 'round her neck :rolleyes:), etc. with the occassional question of if I need a Braille menu or telling me where there is a step (or how many more are left) or asking if I'm partially sighted (just got that one last week and answered, "No," not thinking the person would then think I was completely blind, but thinking they'd realize I wasn't visually impaired at all, LOL! Whoops!).

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Without exception, I have been asked by cruiselines to fax Oslo's medical docs to them, before a cruise. I always carry copies of all docs.

 

Also as I live in Canada, Oslo needs to have an International Health Certificate - Government of Canada stamped and signed by a Government vet. The form is already filled out by our vet with all the info, including shots. The Government of Canada vet certifies it and then it becomes a legal document.

 

This Government of Canada form is needed for travel outside Canada and must be done within 10 days of departure. In particular, US Immigration looks at this form, when we are entering the US.

 

Hope everyone is having a good day:)

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I too, have ALWAYS faxed Brenda's documents prior to cruising..... and show them, again, when I get to the dock and, again, I carry copies with me when leaving and entering the ship, just in case.

We'll be doing Princess, on September 30th and they've asked for an updated "Department of Food and Agriculture" Certificate (first time they've ever asked for this.) Usually, only NCL will ask for it. Doesn't hurt to have one. I'll pick up one from my Vet, today.

I just booked a 15 day cruise to Hawaii, on the Celebrity, Mercury and Hawaii must have a Rabies Titer blood test, before she can enter Hawaii. So, we'll have to have this done prior to that cruise.

Also, my TA has just informed me that his supervisor wants all service dog clients to go through their "special needs" department...He's going to keep working with me....until he's formally told to stop. I like being able to work with the same TA who knows my personal likes and dislikes! We'll see!!! :confused:

Quam: Let's be helpful towards one another....it's enough that we have to deal with people in the "public" who can be adversarial...WE need to SUPPORT each other and celebrate our differences....we have so much in common and yet, we are so different! ;)

Be well, take care of your girl.....Brenda is always called a "he!": What's HIS name?; how old is "HE"?; what does "HE" do? Brenda doesn't seem to mind and when I go to leave and I give her the command; "BRENDA, LET'S GO!" They ALWAYS give me a smile!

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Without exception, I have been asked by cruiselines to fax Oslo's medical docs to them, before a cruise. I always carry copies of all docs.

 

His vaccination records or an actual health certificate? RCCL wants proof of immunity to the common diseases, but not the health certificate faxed in advance (I specifically asked the lady about that). Which is good, since I can't get the certificate for that trip 'til the evening before I leave. I could always fax the one I'll be using the month before, but they said they don't need it.

 

Also as I live in Canada, Oslo needs to have an International Health Certificate - Government of Canada stamped and signed by a Government vet. The form is already filled out by our vet with all the info, including shots. The Government of Canada vet certifies it and then it becomes a legal document.

 

This Government of Canada form is needed for travel outside Canada and must be done within 10 days of departure. In particular, US Immigration looks at this form, when we are entering the US.

 

Sounds like a bit of extra work to get your int'l health certificate up there. Here, there is an approved vet at the vet practice we go to, so she's the one who does the whole int'l health certificate for us.

 

The US needs a 10 day or less old certificate to enter (although, what do you do if you're on a cruise that is more than 10 days? I guess they make an exception??).

 

Hope everyone is having a good day:)

 

Same with you. :)

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We'll be doing Princess, on September 30th and they've asked for an updated "Department of Food and Agriculture" Certificate (first time they've ever asked for this.) Usually, only NCL will ask for it. Doesn't hurt to have one. I'll pick up one from my Vet, today.

 

I just booked a 15 day cruise to Hawaii, on the Celebrity, Mercury and Hawaii must have a Rabies Titer blood test, before she can enter Hawaii. So, we'll have to have this done prior to that cruise.

 

 

Okay, how on earth do you afford cruising so much?! :eek: Do you not take land trips or something? It amazes me how often some of the folks on this board (Cruise Critic, I mean - not the Disabilities section in particular) take cruises. I'm only going on one 'cause it was too good a deal to pass up, especially since I haven't seen my friend in too long (can't wait to see her again!). (The deal was super good - I'm solo in a D1 balcony for less than with the current prices one person [out of two] would pay for a double-occupancy window room and less than what two ppl together [or one solo person] would pay for a double-occupancy inside room! :D ) I am not a fan of boats and being "stuck" in the middle of the ocean, so we'll see how this all works out.... :p

 

 

Also, my TA has just informed me that his supervisor wants all service dog clients to go through their "special needs" department...He's going to keep working with me....until he's formally told to stop. I like being able to work with the same TA who knows my personal likes and dislikes! We'll see!!!

 

Why would he be formally told to stop? By the cruiselines or by the company he works with? I don't see why booking your cruises would be a problem, special needs or not. You can still call special needs yourself even if you use a TA to book the trip (that's what I did).

 

 

Quam: Let's be helpful towards one another....it's enough that we have to deal with people in the "public" who can be adversarial...WE need to SUPPORT each other and celebrate our differences....we have so much in common and yet, we are so different!

 

:confused: Not sure what that's all about.

 

 

Be well, take care of your girl.....Brenda is always called a "he!": What's HIS name?; how old is "HE"?; what does "HE" do? Brenda doesn't seem to mind and when I go to leave and I give her the command; "BRENDA, LET'S GO!" They ALWAYS give me a smile!

 

I wonder why most ppl think of dogs as "he"? I wonder if the same ppl think of cats as "she"? But, hey, even my close extended family members have trouble remembering my dog is a "she", LOL.

 

The whole hot pink collar thing doesn't help like I originally thought it would! Maybe I should've gotten her mobility harness in hot pink, too, LOL!!!!! :eek: Okay, that'd be a bit scary! Natural leather colors work just fine! ;)

 

I'll bet if she wore one of those bandannas that say "Birthday Girl" on it (on/around her birthday, of course), ppl would still say "he".

 

I found the cutest formal-looking bow for her hair the other day at a local pet store. It'll go well with her big white rose on a velvet collar that she wears to formal/Ritz-y events. I'll have to try to remember how many "he" comments we get when she has both on....

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I don't know what's up with my TA's changes (within his office), the owner of the company (a huge online service company), wants to "monitor" all handicapped/special needs requests. I like this gentleman and will continue to use him...you should see the questionnaire that I have to fill out for Celebrity....

We last took Celebrity in 2005 and we didn't have to fill out this form.....as I read on I can see that the questions asked are really about any special needs that I may have and that they may be able to fulfill for me. i.e.; special menues or ship newspapers (for the blind), special assistance with wheelchair or with an emergency; special orientation tour of the ship (they remind me that a 4x4 wooden box, filled with cyprus mulch, will be provided.) They offer special devices for listening, in the shows or in your room. They are so kind and willing to help in any way!

The last time we were on a Celebrity cruise, we got a knock on our door and standing there was a crew member, in white gloves; who wanted to know if he could walk "Brenda" for me. How nice was that?

Celebrity, (who is owned by Royal Caribbean), really reaches out to guests with service animals......and that's a very, very good thing!!!!!! :D

 

We also found that Holland America (owned by Carnival) also wanted to help, in every way!

 

Remember that Celebrity and Holland America are the "upscale" of these two lines. Because, Carnival (Elation), itself, had a very difficult time getting the "potty box" right, in May, 2007. (I pushed the point to the Hotel Manager, that they had made a huge mistake and we got a 15% off of our next Carnival cruise!) We'll see how she does in January, 2008 (Pride.)

Quam: We've realized with the price of gas, that it is more cost effective and much more fun to cruise than take a land based vacation. We try and take as many cruises as we can leaving from L.A./Long Beach or San Diego; all of which are driving distances from our home. :) We still take an occasional trip to San Francisco to visit relatives but Las Vegas doesn't hold the same interest for us, anymore! And, we used to do that trip, at least 3 times a year. Brenda loved making her way through busy casinos; like she was on a safari, stalking out the prey!

I've been on my job for over 10 years and that gives me 4 weeks paid vacation......I will be taking full advantage of that in 2008!

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I don't know what's up with my TA's changes (within his office), the owner of the company (a huge online service company), wants to "monitor" all handicapped/special needs requests. I like this gentleman and will continue to use him...you should see the questionnaire that I have to fill out for Celebrity....

"Monitor" the requests? That sounds a little weird to me. Have you tried asking them for more info. on that? But maybe it is just because some other agents have failed at their job to pass on the special needs requests to the cruise lines (like what happened with my friend's friend and myself).

 

We last took Celebrity in 2005 and we didn't have to fill out this form.....as I read on I can see that the questions asked are really about any special needs that I may have and that they may be able to fulfill for me. i.e.; special menues or ship newspapers (for the blind), special assistance with wheelchair or with an emergency; special orientation tour of the ship (they remind me that a 4x4 wooden box, filled with cyprus mulch, will be provided.) They offer special devices for listening, in the shows or in your room. They are so kind and willing to help in any way!

The one RCCL sent me was made for blind/visually impaired ppl - even the listed medical condition was listed as that (I had to cross it out so they didn't have on file a condition I don't have!). They even had a typed year for where I have to sign and date it - and it was 2006. Yet, the file was created the day they e-mailed it to me (of course - it had my name and cruise info. on it). I got a chuckle outta that one. :)

 

Because, Carnival (Elation), itself, had a very difficult time getting the "potty box" right, in May, 2007. (I pushed the point to the Hotel Manager, that they had made a huge mistake and we got a 15% off of our next Carnival cruise!) We'll see how she does in January, 2008 (Pride.)

I hope you don't have any issues this time!

 

Quam: We've realized with the price of gas, that it is more cost effective and much more fun to cruise than take a land based vacation. We try and take as many cruises as we can leaving from L.A./Long Beach or San Diego; all of which are driving distances from our home. :) We still take an occasional trip to San Francisco to visit relatives but Las Vegas doesn't hold the same interest for us, anymore! And, we used to do that trip, at least 3 times a year. Brenda loved making her way through busy casinos; like she was on a safari, stalking out the prey!

 

I've been on my job for over 10 years and that gives me 4 weeks paid vacation......I will be taking full advantage of that in 2008!

 

I normally fly to my land vacations, but the summer home is driving there (but not too long - just an hour and a half) as are some other places, depending on my starting point.

 

I've never been to the west coast of the US before, though. I'd love to go to Vegas just to see La Nouba's "O"! (I'm not a gambling person.) I'd love to visit a couple friends of mine out near that coast, too. Someday.... :)

 

So, did Brenda bring you luck in the casinos with all that stalking?? ;)

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Quam: I'm like you....I don't gamble....I'm a very poor sport when it comes to throwing away money. We would go for the shows/food and shopping...and, Brenda's "stalking" (in a casino setting) was hysterical. She would see someone's purse or bag near the slot machines or sitting in back of them, at a gaming table and she would stare at it (she has been trained to assist in getting/ picking up things), and she would wait for my command, of which I never gave. But, it was interesting to watch her face as her attention was diverted from time to time. And, I'm sure if I commanded her to do so, she would have retrieved any purse I requested her to......how scary is that?

We were told during training how these dogs could easily be abused, when put in the wrong hands. Can you imagine a thief using Brenda to steal purses? I don't even want to go there!

And, for some reason, none of which we can explain; when we are in a crowded casino or in a crowded area of people, in general; she will walk in front of me (as opposed to beside me), as if leading me. If I were to put on sun glasses, I would definetly look as if I were using a seeing eye dog!

We and the trainers are not clear why she does this, other than to be in a "protective" and "leading" me through the masses, kind of mode!

I've stopped correcting for this.......:rolleyes:

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Quam: I'm like you....I don't gamble....I'm a very poor sport when it comes to throwing away money. We would go for the shows/food and shopping...and, Brenda's "stalking" (in a casino setting) was hysterical. She would see someone's purse or bag near the slot machines or sitting in back of them, at a gaming table and she would stare at it (she has been trained to assist in getting/ picking up things), and she would wait for my command, of which I never gave. But, it was interesting to watch her face as her attention was diverted from time to time. And, I'm sure if I commanded her to do so, she would have retrieved any purse I requested her to......how scary is that?

Haha, that is cute! She must've thought that all those ppl had dropped their purses and needed them to be retrieved! Too funny.

My girl retrieves for me (both dropped things and things I want her to get), but doesn't stalk things.

 

We were told during training how these dogs could easily be abused, when put in the wrong hands. Can you imagine a thief using Brenda to steal purses? I don't even want to go there!

Yeah, as I read your story, I was thinking, "Gee, she could've had her dog steal for her and nobody would've noticed!" Not that you would, of course! But I'm surprised ppl were just leaving their purses laying around like that. I'll bet they do have a lot of thefts at places like that.

 

And, for some reason, none of which we can explain; when we are in a crowded casino or in a crowded area of people, in general; she will walk in front of me (as opposed to beside me), as if leading me. If I were to put on sun glasses, I would definetly look as if I were using a seeing eye dog!

With or without sunglasses, some folks think my girl is a guide dog. They don't realize the difference between a guide harness and an upright mobility harness. She does pull me (as she's trained to do), so that might add to it. And if I am outside wearing sunglasses, well, you can guess - I get the comment even moreso!

 

We and the trainers are not clear why she does this, other than to be in a "protective" and "leading" me through the masses, kind of mode!

 

I've stopped correcting for this.......:rolleyes:

 

Perhaps she doesn't like crowds and/or is afraid of being stepped on? I hope she's not being protective - that's not a good trait for SDs!

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I think your right.....it's her being careful, not to be stepped on! It's not such a bad thing.......she's clears the way for me to walk!

Because when most kind souls see her coming they do (most of the time) allow us to walk without impedence!

I've also have had, on occasion, the folks who stare at us; don't move; and actually watch (while standing right in front of us), to see just how we're going to maneuver the walk space (with them not making any room for the service dog to walk!) I never can figure these people out and just what they're thinking! :( :rolleyes:

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It is my understanding that to cruise with Royal Carribean a service dog needs an international health certificate, even if the SD will not be leaving the ship. Is this correct, or will just a regular health certificate from your vet be enough?

An international health certificate must be filled out by your vet first, then sent/taken to the state department for processing. It is good for 30 days. Does the 30 days start on the date the vet signs it or the date the state department signs it.

Can anyone who has knowledge in these areas please answer. I seem to be getting conflicting information :confused: and would like input from those who have personal knowlege.

Thanks

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pmfan: We have cruised with RCCL, into International waters. Sometimes we debarked and sometimes, we stayed on board.

We were asked to supply them with the following:

1. A current listing of all Vaccinations i.e. Rabies/DHLPP and their expiration dates (your vet will give you this).

2. Animal License (city of L.A., where we reside) requires this.

3. State of California Department of Food and Agriculture (Certificate for interstate or International Movement of Small Animals). (Your vet can give you this, completely filled out - this must be current).

4. Copy of my Passport and, since Brenda was trained and Certified through Canine Companions for Independence, who supply their Teams with a License which certifies that Brenda and I are fully trained for public access, I give them this, as well! (Not all SD organizations supply their teams with this).

RCCL is now sending you, as soon as you book, a form (3 pages), that must be filled out and faxed back to their Access Department. It asks questions about your disability and special needs.

Your TA or RCCL Access Department (800.722.5472 X:34492) will assist you with all the necessary documentation.

I hope this helps......Please don't hesitate to ask questions......Brenda loves the cruise experience and I believe it's because we take care of every detail and she has a definite "comfort zone!"

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I've also have had, on occasion, the folks who stare at us; don't move; and actually watch (while standing right in front of us), to see just how we're going to maneuver the walk space (with them not making any room for the service dog to walk!) I never can figure these people out and just what they're thinking! :( :rolleyes:

 

Some ppl, for whatever reason, feel the need to test ppl's SDs. Since many of them also think all SDs are guide dogs, they feel the need to create physical barriers and get entertainment out of seeing how the dog leads the "blind" person around them. :rolleyes: These are prob'ly the same ppl who bark at or try to frighten an SD while it is working. :rolleyes:

 

In other words, some ppl are just plain stupid!! :p

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It is my understanding that to cruise with Royal Carribean a service dog needs an international health certificate, even if the SD will not be leaving the ship. Is this correct, or will just a regular health certificate from your vet be enough?

You need to call RCCL and ask them for the official answer on this. I would think you would need the int'l one, though, since you will need it to get back into the US off the ship. But, my opinion counts for nothing, so call the Access Desk and ask - and think about getting the int'l one just in case, even if they say the other one is fine.

 

An international health certificate must be filled out by your vet first, then sent/taken to the state department for processing. It is good for 30 days. Does the 30 days start on the date the vet signs it or the date the state department signs it.

You'll have to check with your vet about this, to see if this is the process and to see when the 30 days begins. I haven't had to go through this process for an int'l certificate before - the vet just fills it out and signs it. But maybe your vet isn't certified to do that for int'l certificates or something (there is only one vet in the practice we go to that is certified for such, so she has to be the one doing the certificate for us). It is always a good idea to ask your vet about stuff like this in advance, anyway, as they may know more about the requirements than you can find on the Web.

 

Can anyone who has knowledge in these areas please answer. I seem to be getting conflicting information :confused: and would like input from those who have personal knowlege.

 

Thanks

 

The best place to get info. on issues like this is from the authorities (in this case, the cruise line, the vet, and the governments of the US and the countries the ship is going to). A message board can be a great resource for some things, but for official matters like this, it is best to go to the official sources. Yes, it may take a chunk of time, but I'm sure you'd rather be certain on the requirements over taking a chance on not being able to go on your vacation (or worse)! :)

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