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Agitated Commuter Creates Outrage With How He Treated A Service Dog

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For anyone living in a metropolitan area, taking public transit is a part of your every day life. You encounter hundreds of people on your travels, and usually pass by them without a second thought.

Sometimes certain passengers stick out, whether it's be because they're pregnant, a senior, or have a disability. While most people try to be as accommodating as they can be to these individuals, there are others who couldn't care less about anything other than moving from Point A to Point B.

However, one man was caught on tape for not only being impatient, but for also being exceptionally rude to a blind man and his guide dog.  

An agitated commuter was filmed demanding Amit Patel's guide dog, Kika, move over on the London Underground's escalator, as he grew anxious to get down to the bottom floor.  

In 2016, Patel made headlines after he attached a GoPro to Kika's harness, in an effort to show what it's like commuting while blind. The former emergency room doctor lost his eyesight in 2013, following a hemorrhage behind his eyes, so every night, Patel's wife, Seema checks the taping to see how their day went.

The footage stunned viewers when they saw how poorly Patel was treated. In one clip, he was ignored by railway workers for several minutes, and in another, a woman purposely put her bag beside her so he wouldn't be able to sit down on his ride home.  

This time, the GoPro captured a middle-aged man standing behind Patel, Kika, and a Transport for London (TfL) worker.

According to Metro, the unidentified woman accused Patel - who lost his eyesight following a hemorrhage behind his eyes - of wasting his time and repeatedly asked him to move his dog.

In the footage, the commuter can be heard saying: "I want to get past."

When Patel responds that he can't move Kika as she's a guide dog, he rebuttals with a harsh, "I know that!"

The TfL employee then asks the man, "How do you expect him to move, he needs to hold onto the handrail."

Shockingly, he genuinely replied: "Just let go of the handrail so I can walk past."

Following the altercation, Patel told the Evening Standard it had left him feeling "powerless," and took away his confidence.

"I will dwell on it all day, it just makes me think is society really like that? It makes me feel like a little boy again," Patel said.

Mark Evers, Chief Customer Officer for London Underground, said: "It is important that customers wait behind anyone travelling with a guide dog on the escalator and not push past, so that customers with guide dogs can travel safely."

"We’re committed to providing a transport network that is accessible for all and ask everyone to consider the needs of their fellow passengers," he added.

It's also important to note that handlers should be the only individual touching their service dog, as it could otherwise lead to very serious consequences.

In 2015, Hailey Ashmore took her guide dog, Flynn, to visit her father at work, when a stranger came over to pet him. Since Ashmore suffers from seizures, Flynn's job is to alert her when one is coming on, but his distraction prevented the seven-month-old pup to alter his handler in time.

"I immediately told him to stop," Ashmore told The Dodo. "I thought I had 10 minutes to get safe, take medication and call somebody for help. Unfortunately, I didn't and ended up getting a nasty rug burn."

"Since Flynn was only about 7 months at the time of the accident, he was, and still is, learning to ignore people petting him," Ashmore added. "We understand our dogs are super cute, but they are really important for our safety and health."

What do you think would be a good way to spread awareness about service dogs?

Maya has been working at Shared for 11 Months. She just begrudgingly spent $200 on a gym membership. Contact her at maya@shared.com