I'm not talking about a SD or SDIT but a dog that is not an SDIT being identified as such.
Are you totally sure they are not training to be service dogs?
Could they be confusing service dog and therapy dog, or be training for a different type of "service"?
I know legally it doesn't really matter, right? Because an SDIT is really no different than a companion dog, only an SD has more access rights? I have no problem with the SDIT vest/patch for a dog that really is training to be an SD, I'm just wondering why someone would use that one for a dog that is *not* an SDIT.
It depends on the area. Service dogs in training are not covered under the ADA, but some states do include them in the state laws. So in some states, either a handler with a disability or a trainer/individual training the dog for someone else DOES have access rights with a service dog in training.
So it is possible that people may be using these vests/patches in order to gain access to places where pets are not allowed by passing their pet dog off as a SDIT, if the state includes SDIT in the law. In some states only "certified" trainers or those with a service dog school have access rights with SDIT but in other states that is not specified.
However if the person is only taking the dog into public places that pet dogs are allowed, they are probably not breaking any laws unless the state has a specific law for passing a pet off as a service dog in training on the street. Obviously it's still wrong if the dog is not truly a SDIT.
I am not sure why they would put these patches on a dog if they're not training it for a service dog and not trying to sneak them into places pets aren't allowed. If they just don't want people to pet the dog, they could use DO NOT PET patches (or one of those "dog in training" or "needs space" vests) without using the word service dog, and if they want people to pet the dog there are better options than a SDIT patch which would have the opposite effect.