Dr. Helen

First Service Dogs, Now Service Monkeys?

Everywhere you go now, it seems people have a service animal that must accompany them everywhere, often for mental health reasons. Of course, they are usually dogs, but not on this flight:

The monkey that reportedly got “loose” on a Las Vegas-bound Frontier Airlines flight from Ohio late Tuesday was a certified service animal, airline officials said.

Melissa Nunnery, a spokeswoman for McCarran International Airport, initially said a Frontier staff member reported to McCarran “that the monkey was loose, or got loose” briefly during the flight, but couldn’t clarify what “loose” meant.

Early Wednesday, the airline clarified that the monkey was in the main cabin, but never broke free during the flight.

“The monkey was never loose in the cabin,” Frontier spokesman Richard Oliver said Wednesday. “It was always with the passenger it was traveling with.”

The flight in question was No. 1087, which departed out of Columbus, Ohio at 9:43 p.m.

It’s unclear what type of monkey it was, but Nunnery said the monkey was an emotional support animal, adding that “the passenger had all the proper paperwork to have the monkey on the plane with him.”

The Metropolitan Police Department responded to assist with the incident, but determined that nothing criminal took place, Metro officer Laura Meltzer said.

The plane landed at McCarran at 11:02 p.m., and its passengers — including the monkey — had since disembarked, Nunnery said about midnight.

Really? Why for emotional reasons does someone need a monkey? What next, service leopards?

What do you thing of the new service animal craze where people certify animals to accompany them everywhere? Are you for or against it?