skip to main content columnskip to left navigationskip to horizontal navigation

Employee Relations

Office of Human Resources

PPP-43 Animals on Campus

pdf iconPPP-43 Animals on Campus


This policy applies to animals classified as "pets" and "service animals" but does not apply to animals used for research purposes.

This policy does not apply to the living quarters and support buildings that are assigned to university employees as a part of their employment contract.

Owners of animals permitted on campus are responsible for ensuring that their animal's wastes are properly removed from the grounds and disposed of in the trash or sanitary sewer.  Modifications or exceptions will be made for persons with disabilities who are unable to comply with this requirement.

Pet Animals

No pets or animals of any nature shall be permitted in any university facility including residence facilities; provided that if authorized in writing by the institution, fish in aquariums of a designated size may be allowed.

Requests for the use of animals for educational purposes, other than research, or special events, i.e., cat and dog shows, etc., should be requested through the sponsor's chain-of-authority to the Health and Safety Office.

Wild, except for indigenous populations, or exotic animals are forbidden on campus except by special permission of the Health and Safety Office and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.

Service Animals

To provide equal opportunity to disabled individuals to obtain employment, education, and services from the university, it is the policy of East Tennessee State University to allow and encourage disabled people to use service animals, subject to the conditions stated below.

The term "service animal" includes any animal that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability. Typical tasks include guiding people with vision impairments, alerting individuals with hearing impairments, pulling a wheelchair, or retrieving items. A service animal may be a dog, monkey, or other animal.

A service animal is permitted in all classrooms, offices, hallways, dormitories, eating facilities, museums, theaters, sports areas, auditoriums, and other sites on campus, provided that:

  1. The animal is in a harness or kept on a leash. However, service animals kept in good control by a disabled person need not be in a harness or on a leash when in a disabled student's own housing facility or at an employee's own work station.  Other exceptions to this policy are made on a case by case basis.

  2. The animal is adequately controlled so as to present no undue noise or disruption to others.

  3. The animal creates no danger of infection, transmission of disease, or other health problems to people. (Note: A well-controlled service animal creates no more of a health risk than a person, so it should be allowed in any areas as humans without special clothing or extensive hygiene requirements).

  4. If a service animal is used by a person living in a university dormitory and an assigned roommate objects to the presence of the animal, the university may reassign either the disabled person or the roommate, at the University's option, to another room.

  5. The university may, but is not required to, demand that a person desiring to use a service animal on the premises of East Tennessee State University provide reasonable proof that the individual is legally disabled and that the service animal is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability.

The university and university employees or agents assume no responsibility for controlling, keeping, feeding, or otherwise caring for any service animal. The university and its employees assume no legal responsibilities for any injury or damage caused by a service animal.

Job applicants and employees of the university shall not be discriminated against in any aspect of employment because of an individual's use of a service animal in conformance with this policy. Allowing the use of a service animal shall, in most cases, be a reasonable accommodation that allows an applicant or employee to qualify for the job in question. However, if the use of the service animal substantially interferes with the performance of essential job tasks, the accommodation may be re-evaluated.

No employee, agent, representative, student, or other person affiliated with East Tennessee State University shall discriminate against an individual because of the use of a service animal in conformance with the requirements of this policy. No disabled person shall be prevented from entering, remaining, or using facilities of this University because of the use of a service animal, unless such use is not in conformance to the requirements of this policy.

icon for left menu icon for right menu