Jason Baird, 28, plants a kiss on the forehead of Ichiban, a 4-month-old Chesapeake Bay Retriever and service dog in-training. Baird suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of his 2007 deployment to the coast of Somalia with the United States Navy. Baird says his PTSD had reached a point where he could not sleep for 2-3 days at a time and was self-medicating with alcohol. In mid-2008, Baird started training with one of his other dogs and his life has improved tenfold. Recently, Baird was denied entry to a local gun store because Ichiban was by his side.
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Telegram photo / Hannah Potes

Jason Baird, 28, plants a kiss on the forehead of Ichiban, a 4-month-old Chesapeake Bay Retriever and service dog in-training. Baird suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of his 2007 deployment to the coast of Somalia with the United States Navy. Baird says his PTSD had reached a point where he could not sleep for 2-3 days at a time and was self-medicating with alcohol. In mid-2008, Baird started training with one of his other dogs and his life has improved tenfold. Recently, Baird was denied entry to a local gun store because Ichiban was by his side.

Veteran, gun store owner at odds over dog

By John Henderson

Staff Writer

7 Comments | Leave a Comment

A veteran is alleging that a local gun shop owner discriminated against him by refusing to allow his service dog that helps him cope with post traumatic stress disorder into the business. The owner of Down Range at 1210 Home Depot Plaza disputes the claim.

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Comments

Puppy in store.

"PTSD comes in the form of night terrors, anxiety, insomnia, and hypervigiliance." I am truly sympathic to your plight, but to be to the point of the symptoms you describe are somewhat alarming when it comes to having guns readily available, and of course, the most of us do not live with the daily symptoms that you described. I have seen "service dogs" for veterans which were small "lap" dogs used for this purpose, in psrticular a Yorkie, who was decked out in full service vest indicating that he was a service dog and on the job, (full grown). I have never heard of a puppy being given full status as a service dog until they have passed all areas of training and then put to work with their vet. As I said, not making light of your condition, but the circumstances of the animal are somewhat strange. A service dog would not relieve himself in a store or anywhere other than the proper place to "go".

Reply

Having a gun isn't the issue--especially since it wasn't for him. Even if it was, each case of PTSD is different. My husband's service dog in training, under NC law, is allowed to go anywhere a certified service dog can go. His dog didn't defecate in the store--the owner had an issue with another customer who allowed his dog to do so. Furthermore, there is no requirement for a vest or harness as long as ID is visible (and it was via a tag attached to his leash. I really recommend folks to research psychiatric service dogs--not emotional support dogs (which have no protection under state or ADA regulations).

PTSD and Guns

My husband (the veteran mentioned) was looking at a gun for his mom, and I was going to inquire about concealed carry classes for myself. (Just to clarify). Also, keep in mind that PTSD takes MANY forms. PTSD doesn't mean you're crazy or unstable or can't use firearms. Many times, PTSD comes in the form of night terrors, anxiety, insomnia, and hypervigiliance. Just a thought.

The Wife

Did any of you ever stop to think the firearm purchase may have been for the wife?

Really

He has PTSD but this doesnt mean he has give up his entire life. Dont know about you but Shooting my gun helps me relieve stress. Stoping what you love because of a set back or dissorder doesnt make you stronger. It makes you weak and eventaully even more sick. I suffer from haterockymountitis but I still live and work here. The problem is we have a disorder for everything and if we keep stressing telling people they are sick and shouldnt be doing things they love.....they will eventually believe it themselves and become even more sick. Do what you love vet and the gun store be ashamed. Bet I go elsewhere!

Veteran

I am the spouse of a Veteran suffering from the same disorder & as gherring mentioned .... I'm more concerned that he was in the store to possibly purchase a gun then the fact that the dog was not allowed.

PTSD

Just a thought, if the gentleman (the veteran) has an emotional disorder so severe that he requires a service dog why is he trying to buy a gun? To me the issue is not the dog, but the fact that someone with an admitted emotional disorder is in a gun shop attempting to make a purchase.

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