Service Animals and Emotional Support Animals


A “pet” is any animal kept for ordinary use and companionship.  Service animals and Emotional Support animals are not considered pets.  Pets are generally prohibited on the Fredonia campus.


Service Animals

A "service animal" means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability. The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the person's disability. The provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship does not constitute work or tasks for the purpose of this definition. Species other than dogs or, in some cases, miniature horses, are not considered service animals for the purpose of this definition of a service animal.

Service animals will be permitted to accompany people with disabilities in all areas of Fredonia’s facilities. Fredonia does not require documentation, such as proof that the animal has been certified, trained, or licensed as a service animal. Individuals accompanied by a service animal on campus but who do not need any disability-related accommodations are not required to register with the Office of Accessibility Services, nor is such individual required to submit a request for a reasonable accommodation to receive access of his or her service animal, including use of the service animal in the residential halls.

Fredonia staff cannot ask about the nature or extent of a person's disability to determine whether a person's animal qualifies as a service animal. However, when it is not apparent that a dog is a service animal, staff may make two inquiries to determine whether the dog qualifies as a service animal, which are:

(1) Is the dog required because of a disability?

(2) What work or task has the dog been trained to perform?

A service animal must be housebroken (i.e., trained so that it controls its waste elimination, absent illness or accident) and must be kept under control by a harness, leash, or other tether. Fredonia will assess requests for the use of miniature horses by people with disabilities on a case-by-case basis. Requests should be submitted to the Office of Accessibility Services and, consistent with applicable laws, Fredonia may make modifications in its policies to permit their use if they meet certain criteria and have been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of people with disabilities.


Emotional Support Animal (ESA)

An “emotional support animal" is an animal that provides emotional or other support that ameliorates one or more identified symptoms or effects of a person's disability. Unlike service animals, support animals are not required to be trained to perform work or tasks, and they include species other than dogs and miniature horses.


Emotional Support Animals in Campus Housing

ESAs are generally not allowed to accompany persons with disabilities in all public areas of Fredonia as a service animal is allowed to do, but an ESA may reside in the Residence Halls when it may be necessary to afford the person with a disability an equal opportunity to on campus housing. Students may not have an ESA in their residential hall unless approved by the Office of Disability Support Services.

Students seeking an accommodation to have an emotional support animal in their residence hall room are required to first submit their information to the google form, here.

Once received, the Office of Disability Support Services will email the student via their Fredonia email account to discuss the next steps regarding the University’s Emotional Support Animal Procedure and Guidelines. 

  • Please note that the licensed mental health provider must be from New York state or from the state of the student’s permanent residence.  Documentation from online providers will not be accepted.

ESAs are not allowed in campus housing until the accommodation is approved by the Office of Disability Support Services and all steps in the ESA procedure are completed.


Recommended Submission Dates

Requests for ESAs and all subsequent documents are asked to adhere to the below submission dates in order to ensure that there is sufficient time to process the accommodation (if approved). If the request for accommodation is made after the below submission dates, Fredonia cannot guarantee that it will be able to meet the individual’s accommodation needs during the first semester of the request.

Spring Semester submit by: January 10th

Fall Semester submit by: August 12th

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