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By Marcie Davis

I recently interviewed Marsha Gilford, who serves as Regional Corporate Affairs Manager for the Kroger Co., the nation’s largest traditional grocery store chain. We spoke about what she is doing in her role overseeing community relations at Smith’s Food & Drug. Marsha stopped by to talk about a communication program Smith’s created on the difference between service dogs and pets. We love their educational and positive approach to the hot topic issue of fake service dogs.

Marsha agreed to share with our readers and listeners some of the materials that were developed for Smith’s information program. She collaborated with the Utah Food Industry Association and a local service dog trainer in to create customer-friendly information and training that would empower Smith’s store managers to better communicate with customers about the important difference between pets and service animals so that every customer could have an enjoyable shopping experience.

You can download the Smith’s Policy on Animals in Food Establishments, a handout for customers.

And you can download the Smith’s Responses to Customers with Animals in Stores, information for store managers.

Thanks to Marsha Gilford and Kroger Co. for educating customers and store managers about this important issue.

You can hear the entire conversation with Marsha in Episode 136 of the Working Like Dogs radio show, “Do You Know the Difference Between an Assistance Dog and a Pet?”