Case Heads To Court Next Month

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A lower Manhattan woman is fighting with her building over her dog.

The management of East River Housing on Grand Street has threatened Amy Eisenberg with eviction if she doesn’t get rid of her licensed therapy dog, Ruby, 1010 WINS reported.

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Eisenberg worked in a building across the street from the World Trade Center and was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder following 9/11.

“I don’t sleep at night, I have heart palpitations, I don’t like going in subways because fears of 9/11 come rushing back,” Eisenberg told 1010 WINS.

She went years without a dog because she lived alone and didn’t have anybody to help her take care of a dog when she was away or at work.

That changed in early 2012 when she met her boyfriend.

“When I was lucky enough to meet somebody, we decided that we could get a dog because he worked from home and that way I would have Ruby around because that would be the best thing for me,” Eisenberg said.

Eisenberg got Ruby, a 14-pound Cockapoo, over a year ago to help her overcome the symptoms.

Amy Eisenberg with her therapy dog Ruby (credit: Amy Eisenberg)

Amy Eisenberg with her therapy dog Ruby (credit: Amy Eisenberg)

“If she sees that I’m anxiety-ridden or have shortness of breath or heart palpitations, she literally will come to me and lay across my lap to calm me down. It’s really the only thing that takes care that,” Eisenberg told 1010 WINS. “I can’t get rid of her, I won’t get rid of her, she’s there for me, I need her.”

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Months after getting Ruby, Eisenberg said she received an eviction notice because her building doesn’t allow pets.

Ruby is licensed by the state as a therapy dog which gives her protection under the Fair Housing Act.

The act requires public and private housing providers to modify policies and practices that deprive individuals with disabilities of their rights to enjoy and use their dwellings.

Individuals are protected by the act as long as they have a legitimate disability, their service dog provides a function directly related to the disability and their request to have the dog is reasonable.

The case is going to court on Aug. 14.

Eisenberg said the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is also investigating her case.

Building management has declined to comment.

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