Navy vet, service dog advised to leave grocery store due to safety

Navy vet, service dog advised to leave grocery store due to safety

DEXTER, MO (KFVS) - Federal laws require businesses to allow anyone with a service dog into their establishment, but one man said it continues to be an issue for him at the Save A Lot in Dexter.

"I just don't feel like it is right," James Steadman said.

Steadman suffers from PTSD after serving time in the Navy.

"Anxieties kick in and I start freezing up again and I cant have that," he said.

That's why he walks around with his pit bull-mix, Dottie Ann.

Steadman said the majority of stores in Dexter don't have a problem with his service dog, except Save A Lot.

"The first time they came up to me stopped my shopping and sent me out," he said. "The second time I didn't even get more than 10 feet in the door."

According to Federal laws, any business that serves the public must allow people with service dogs to enter.

Michael Burris is Save A Lot store manager. He said the precautions his employees took was for the safety of the customers

"We respect everyone's right to have a service dog with them," Burris said. "However, in this situation, there was a safety concern and so the manager on duty thought it might be pertinent to call the Dexter Police Department."

Steadman said he doesn't understand why police had to be call when he has a card verifying his pet as a service dog.

"She's legal," he said. "She can go anywhere I go. She can get on planes, trains, anything else with me. I don't see why she can't go into store with me. "

When police did arrive, no charges were filed against Steadman. By law Steadman did not have to show proof or say the type of disability he has in order to use a service dog.

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