A Florida woman says she was denied a drink at a McDonald’s restaurant because employees said she couldn’t prove her dog was a service animal.
Elisha Griggs entered a Bradenton-area McDonald’s on Friday with her service dog, Onyx, and tried to order a drink, WFLA reports. When she walked up to the counter to order, she was asked about her companion.
“They told me, ‘No pets.’ I said, ‘She’s not a pet. She’s a service dog.’ They asked me if I had paperwork for her. I said, ‘Yes,’ ” she said.
Griggs told WFLA that when she brought her doctor’s note from her vehicle, they still didn’t allow her to have Onyx inside. “They told me that the paperwork basically wasn’t good enough and they wanted to know what my disability was,” she said.
She said she went back and got her drink to “prove a point” after contacting the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office, who told her that McDonald’s had to let her in with Onyx.
A McDonald’s representative told WFLA that it “wasn’t obvious Griggs’ dog is a service animal” and that there was "nothing to show" to prove it. The incident was called a “misunderstanding.”
“We welcome customers to our restaurant with service animals. We have reached out to the customer to resolve the issue,” the company said in a statement, according to WFLA.
Griggs said she wasn’t looking for compensation. She received a phone call afterward, she said, but she was hoping for an admission of guilt.
“Honestly, I would like a real apology," she told WFLA. "I kind of felt like that’s kind of owed to me.”
Read more at WFLA.