ADA Policy for Service Animals

Southeastern Oklahoma State University (SE) complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 504, which states, “No otherwise qualified person with a disability in the United States…shall, solely on the basis of a disability, be denied access to, or the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity provided by any institution receiving federal assistance.” SE intends to provide the broadest possible access to service animals in all of its public areas.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) defines a service animal as “any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to provide assistance to an individual with a disability.”

A service animal is not a pet, but can perform some of the functions and tasks that an individual with a disability cannot perform himself or herself. Animals are considered “service animals” under ADA, if they meet this definition, regardless of whether they have been licensed or certified by a state or local government. Therapy animals are not considered service animals. Below are basic policy guidelines for SE:

  • A service animal is permitted to accompany the individual with a disability to most areas on campus where students are normally allowed to go. Some areas on campus are not safe for service animals; therefore, these areas may exclude service animals. Research laboratories and/or areas that require protective clothing may exclude service animals. A laboratory director, or an instructor in a classroom or teaching area with moving equipment or machinery, may grant or deny admission to an area on a case–by–case basis. This denial or granting of admission to an area will be made based on the nature of the machinery and/or on the nature of the research.
  • An individual with a service animal may not be segregated from other students.
  • A service animal may be excluded from a facility, including a classroom, if that animal poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others.
  • A service animal may be excluded from a facility, including a classroom, if that animal’s behavior, such as barking, is disruptive to the other participants within the facility.
  • If a service animal is excluded from a facility, the individual with a disability will be given the option of continued classroom participation, with assistance, within the facility.
  • The service animal must be clean, in good health, with current rabies vaccination.
  • All service animals must be on a leash at all times.
  • City ordinances require dogs to wear a vaccination tag at all times. All students and university employees must abide by current city ordinances/laws pertaining to licensing and vaccination requirements for service animals. It is the responsibility of the owner and/or user of the animal to know about these ordinances and/or laws.
  • All owners and or users of service animals are responsible to clean up after and properly dispose of their animal’s feces while on campus.

A grievance can be filed through the regular University grievance procedures on file with the SE Compliance Officer (Administration Building, Room 311 or call 580-745-3090) or the Office of Student Affairs (Administration Building, Room 205 or call 580-745-2368).

If you have further questions, please contact the Coordinator of Disability Services, GDJ Student Union Suite 328 or call 580–745–2392.

Approved by Legal Counsel 7/30/02
Approved as Policy 8/7/02
Updated by Committee 11/8/06
Revised 1/14/09 in compliance with the
ADA Amendments Act of 2008 and OCR