A fracas broke out at an East End restaurant over the weekend after the management of the restaurant sought to deny admittance to the emotional support animal of a customer’s emotional support animal. Police were called to the restaurant to restore order, and arrived to find a scene of shouting and confusion.
“It took us quite a while to establish what was going on,” Hamptons Police spokesman Larry Hirsch says, “but we managed to calm the situation and get a handle on what caused the disruption. And then it didn’t matter, because we all had to get out!”
According to Hirsch, a customer made a reservation at the restaurant with the understanding that his emotional support animal, a North American beaver, would be welcome at the establishment. This is not uncommon, Hirsch says. “This particular restaurant has a policy of allowing support animals to be seated with their owners, provided the owner is able to provide a letter from a medical professional attesting to the therapeutic value of the specific animal.”
Hirsch notes that the customer provided this required documentation in advance. However, when the customer appeared at the restaurant, he was accompanied not only by the beaver but also by a muskrat. “What the customer told the restaurant management is that the muskrat is another emotional support animal—not for himself, but for the beaver,” Hirsch adds. “He said that the beaver would be ‘a basket case’ if he didn’t have his ‘little Muskie’ to keep him company, and as a result the beaver would be of no therapeutic value to him, thus rendering his whole emotional support network ineffective.”
The customer insisted that the restaurant honor his reservation and allow him to be seated with his beaver and the beaver’s muskrat, while the management demanded that the customer vacate the premises with both beaver and muskrat. This argument was in progress when officers arrived, but soon afterward the muskrat became excited and sprayed the room, at which point customers, police and management evacuated the premises.