Do you feel that people now bring their dogs everywhere? According to the American Kennel Club, the Denver International Airport is rated the top dog-friendly national airport, offering private pet restrooms in each concourse and an airport pet resort, “Paradise 4 Paws.” Huffington Post recently wrote an article about 19 major retailers which allow dogs, including Pottery Barn, Nordstrom and Saks.
Denver has ten doggie parks, one of which in the Denver Highlands features a full-service bar with craft beers. And you will find service dogs at restaurants, performances and religious services.
But there is one place still closed to our furry best friends – the ski slopes. Or more precisely, the ski chair lift. A veteran attempted to board a lift at Winter Park with her service dog, Guinness, but was prevented to bring the dog up for the ride. The vet, a Grand County volunteer ski patroller, filed a complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Division. The director ruled that there was no discrimination.
The Department of Justice allows some businesses to deny service animals for “legitimate safety requirements” that “must be based on actual risks.” The Denver Post reports that very few ski areas allow service dogs on open chairlifts, but many do permit service animals on gondolas or trams.
To Winter Park’s credit, employees did offer to drive the skier and pooch to the top of the mountain.