OK, class, today’s question:
How did we get from seeing eye dogs to emotional support animals?
Air Canada is trying to figure out how to accommodate people who insist on taking their cats on the plane and at the same time protect people who are allergic to cats.
They forgot to ask me, but the answer is obvious. Tell people to leave Kitty at home.
I have nothing against cats, but referring to them as “emotional support animals” and thereby elevating them to the status of seeing eye dogs is a stretch and a clear sign that the entitlement society needs to cough up a hairball and get real.
I realize I’m treading on wafer-thin ice, but if you want an emotional support animal, get a golden retriever. They love everybody, almost as much as they love food, and are happy to see you, especially if you come with food.
Cats, on the other hand, barely notice other species that aren’t dinner. They may crawl into your lap and go to sleep, but only because it’s a warm place to go to sleep. They don’t discriminate, as anyone who has ever awakened to find a cat sleeping on their face can tell you.
But, even if Kitty loves you, why return the favour by stuffing Kitty in a tiny box and making her fly economy?
(Just to make it clear. I’m an equal opportunity curmudgeon: The same goes for shih tzus and the like. Leave your adorable mutt at home in the care of a competent kennel.)
What’s really annoying is this tendency to escalate beyond all reason. It’s one thing to feel the urge to take Kitty to visit Aunt Bossy in Halifax, quite another to declare Kitty an “emotional support animal,” raising her companionship to the level of ersatz human right. Right.
And shame on Air Canada for knuckling under. I like peanuts, but the airline had no difficulty depriving me of the tasty legume in order to protect other passengers from anaphylactic shock. As if?
Air Canada needs to know I’m addicted to peanuts. Once I start, I can’t stop. Without peanuts, I’ll never make it to Halifax. Those little cracker thingies don’t fill the bill; I require emotional-support nuts.
And if I don’t get them, I’ll complain to my friendly neighbourhood Human Rights Commission, which never met a complaint it didn’t like.
Then, I’m going into hiding.