Animals on Campus Policy

Responsible Office or Person: Department of Public Safety
Related Law & Policy:   Pets at Work Policy
                                          Americans With Disabilities Act
                                          Fair Housing Act


This policy applies to all employees, faculty, students and visitors of Carroll University and provides rules and guidelines for bringing animals on University property.

Policy Statement

Carroll University welcomes animals on campus consistent with the procedures outlined in this policy, but may exclude an animal from campus if it causes disruption, threatens the health or safety of others or otherwise fails to meet the criteria set forth in this policy.


Handler. The owner and person in charge of an animal.

Pet. Any animal kept for ordinary use and companionship.  Service Animals and Support Animals are not considered Pets.

Service Animal. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) defines a service animal as dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities. Examples of such work or tasks include guiding people who are blind, alerting people who are deaf, pulling a wheelchair, alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure, reminding a person with mental illness to take prescribed medications, calming a person with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) during an anxiety attack, or performing other duties. Service animals are working animals, not pets. The work or task a dog has been trained to provide must be directly related to the person’s disability. Dogs whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the ADA.” 

Service Animal in Training. An animal who is participating in a formal program to learn how to become a Service Animal.  Service Animals in Training are allowed on campus to the same extent and subject to the same limitations as Service Animals.

Emotional Support Animal (ESA). An ESA is an animal that is prescribed to a student with a disability by a healthcare or mental health professional and is necessary to afford the student with an equal opportunity to use and enjoy on-campus housing.


Service Animals
Service Animals are permitted to accompany people with disabilities in all areas of University facilities, including on-campus housing and where students, members of the public, and other participants in services, programs, or activities are allowed to go.

A Service Animal must be trained so that it controls its waste elimination, absent illness or accident. The handler must maintain control of the Service Animal at all times by a harness, leash, or other tether, or by voice, signals or other effective means if the handler is unable to hold control devices, or such use would interfere with the Service Animal’s performance of work or tasks.

Carroll University does not require documentation, such as proof that the animal has been certified, trained, or licensed as a Service Animal.  University employees may only ask two questions of the Handler to determine whether the animal qualifies as a Service Animal:
  1. Is the animal required because of a disability?
  2. What work or task has the animal been trained to perform?
Emotional Support Animals (ESA)
An Emotional Support Animal is prescribed by a mental health provider and selected to play an integral part of a person’s treatment process that demonstrates a good temperament and reliable, predictable behavior. Office of Services for Students with Disabilities (OSSD) requires that the student with an ESA engage in “active and on-going treatment” in order to qualify as a student who can keep an ESA on the Carroll University campus. An ESA is not a service animal, and unlike a service animal, an ESA does not assist a person with a disability with activities of daily living, nor does it accompany a person with a disability at all times. Unlike service animals, ESAs cannot accompany a student to class.

With respect to a request for a service animal or Emotional Support Animal (ESA), the OSSD will determine, on a case by case basis, and in accordance with applicable laws and regulations, whether such animal is a reasonable accommodation on campus. In doing so, Carroll University must balance the needs of the individual with the impact of animals on campus community members. An ESA must be at least 5 months old to be brought to campus.

Where it is not readily apparent that an animal is a service animal as defined by the ADA, or ESA under the Fair Housing Act, Carroll University may require sufficient information and documentation to determine whether the animal qualifies as a service animal or ESA under the applicable law. Letters purchased from the internet for a set price rarely provide the information necessary to support an ESA request.  Carroll University requires that the documentation be provided on the letterhead of a treating physician or mental health provider, and that permits Carroll University to determine: Pets
Pets are welcome to use public outdoor spaces on campus, subject to certain restrictions including the athletic fields and graduation.  Where pets are permitted on campus, handlers are expected to clean up after their animals.  Pets visiting campus must be kept on a leash, tether, or harness that does not exceed six feet in length at all times and may not be left unattended or tied to any objects.  All damages caused by an animal are the responsibility of the handler. 

To maintain safety and avoid disruption, pets are not allowed inside buildings or other indoor spaces owned or controlled by the University.

Responsibilities of Animal Handlers
Handlers must comply with the following provisions regarding the behavior and care of animals on campus:


This policy does not apply to animals used in approved University research or animals used for academic or educational purposes in the classroom. 

The University may impose additional restrictions on the presence of animals in certain locations or at particular events.

The University may invite animals to campus for specific events, i.e. Fidos for Finals.

Exceptions to this policy must be submitted to the Director of Public Safety for approval. 


Panoramic View of campus