Animals on Campus

All public laws, both city and state, apply to any type of animal on the campus grounds. Animals (except for fish) are not allowed inside any college building with the exception of recognized service animals, recognized assistance animals and animals maintained for educational purposes. Service and assistance animals accompanying students living in the residence halls must be registered with the Residence Life Office and the Learning Support and Disability Services Office. In conformity with the Caldwell City Dog Ordinance (#080317), all dogs that are brought on campus are expected to be on a leash and in the company of their owners. Animals are not to be tied and left unattended to campus trees, signs, etc. for any period of time. If animals are loose, Animal Control personnel may remove them.

Service and Assistance Animals on Campus

I.                   Definitions

Handler – a person with a disability that a service or assistance animal assists or a personal care attendant who handles the animal for a person with a disability.

Service Animal – Any dog* individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability and meets the definition of “service animal” under the Americans with Disabilities Act at 28 CFR 35.104.  The work or tasks performed must be directly related to the individual’s disability.

Examples include, but are not limited to: assisting individuals who are blind or have low vision with navigation and other tasks, alerting individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to the presence of people or sounds, providing non-violent protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, assisting an individual during a seizure, alerting individuals to the presence of allergens, retrieving items such as medicine or the telephone, providing physical support and assistance with balance and stability to individuals with mobility disabilities, and helping persons with psychiatric and neurological disabilities by preventing or interrupting impulsive or destructive behaviors.  The crime deterrent effects of an animal’s presence and the provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship do not constitute work or tasks for the purposes of this definition.

*Under particular circumstances set forth in the ADA regulations at 28 CFR 35.136(i), a miniature horse may qualify as a service animal.

Assistance Animal – An assistance animal is one that is necessary to afford the person with a disability an equal opportunity to use and enjoy college housing.  An assistance animal may provide physical assistance, emotional support, calming, stability and other kinds of assistance.  Assistance Animals do not perform work or tasks that would qualify them as “service animals” under the Americans with Disabilities Act. 

II.  The College of Idaho’s Policy on Service Animals

In compliance with applicable law, The College of Idaho generally allows service animals in its building, classrooms, residence halls, meetings, dining areas, recreational facilities, activities and events when the animal is accompanied by an individual with a disability who indicates the service animal is trained to provide, and does provide, a specific service to them that is directly related to their disability.

The College of Idaho may not permit service animals when the animal poses a substantial and direct threat to health or safety or when the presence of the animal constitutes a fundamental alteration to the nature of the program or service.  The College of Idaho will make those determinations on a case-by-case basis.

A. The College of Idaho’s Inquiries Regarding Service Animals

In general, The College of Idaho will not ask about the nature or extent of a person’s disability, but may make two inquiries to determine whether an animal qualifies as a service animal.  The College of Idaho may ask:

  1.  If the animal is required because of a disability and;
  2. What work or task the animal has been trained to perform.

The College of Idaho cannot require documentation, such as proof that the animal has been certified, trained, or licensed as a service animal.  Generally, The College of Idaho may not make any inquiries about a service animal when it is readily apparent that an animal is trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability (e.g., the dog is observed guiding an individual who is blind or has low vision, pulling a person’s wheelchair, or providing assistance with stability or balance to an individual with an observable mobility disability).

B.   Responsibilities of Handlers

Students who wish to bring a service animal to campus are strongly encouraged to partner with the Learning Support and Disability Services Department, especially if other academic accommodations are required.  Additionally, student who plan to live in on-campus housing are strongly encouraged to inform Residence Life and Bon Appétit Food Services that they plan to have a service animal with them in student housing.  Advance notice of a service animal for on-campus housing may allow more flexibility in meeting student’s specific requests for housing.

Handlers are responsible for any damage or injuries caused by their animals and must take appropriate precautions to prevent property damage or injury. The cost of care, necessary arrangements, and responsibilities for the well-being of an assistance animal are the sole responsibility of the handler at all times. 

1. Service Animal Control Requirements 

  • The animal should be on a leash when not providing a needed service to the handler.
  • The animal should respond to voice or hand commands at all times and be under the full control of the handler.
  • To the extent possible, the service animal should be unobtrusive to other individuals and the learning, living and working environment.
  • Identification – It is recommended that the animal wear some type of commonly recognized identification symbol, identifying the animal as a working animal, but not disclosing the disability.

2.  Animal Etiquette

To the extent possible, the handler should ensure that the animal does not:

  • Sniff people, dining tables or the personal belongings of others.
  • Display any behaviors or noises that are disruptive to others, unless part of the service being provided the handler.
  • Block an aisle or passageway for fire egress.
3.  Waste Cleanup Rule

Cleaning up after the animal is the sole responsibility of the handler.  In the event that the handler is not physically able to clean up after the animal, it is then the responsibility of the handler to hire someone capable of cleaning up after the animal.  The person cleaning up after the animal should abide by the following guidelines:

  • Always carry equipment sufficient to clean up the animals feces whenever the animal is on campus.
  • Properly dispose of waste and/or litter in appropriate containers.
  • Contact staff if arrangements are needed to assist with cleanup.  Any cost incurred for doing so is the sole responsibility of the handler.

C.   Removal of Service Animals

Service Animals may be ordered removed by the Campus Safety Department for the following reasons:

  1. Out of control animal: A handler may be directed to remove an animal that is out of control and the handler does not take effective action to control it.  If the improper animal behavior happens repeatedly, the handler may be prohibited from bringing the animal into any college facility until the handler can demonstrate that he/she had taken significant steps to mitigate the behavior.
  2. Non-housebroken Animal: A handler may be directed to remove any animal that is not housebroken.
  3. Direct Threat: A handler may be directed to remove an animal that The College of Idaho determines to be a substantial and direct threat to the health and safety of individuals.  This may occur as a result of a very ill animal, a substantial lack of cleanliness of the animal, or the presence of an animal in a sensitive area like a medical facility, certain laboratories or mechanical or industrial areas.

Where a service animal is properly removed pursuant to this policy, The College of Idaho will work with the handler to determine reasonable alternative opportunities to participate in the service, program, or activity without having the service animal on the premises.

D.      Conflicting Disabilities

Some people may have allergic reactions to animals that are substantial enough to qualify as disabilities.  The College of Idaho will consider the needs of both persons in meeting its obligations to reasonably accommodate all disabilities and to resolve the problem as efficiently and expeditiously as possible.  Student requesting allergy accommodations should contact the Learning Support and Disabilities Services Department.

E.       Emergency Response

Emergency Situations – In the event of an emergency, the Campus Safety or First Responders will attempt to recognize service animals and be aware that the animal may be trying to communicate the need for help. The animal may become disoriented from the smell of smoke in a fire or laboratory emergency, from sirens or wind noise, or from shaking and moving ground. The handler and/or animal may be confused from the stressful situation. The Campus Safety Officers or First Responders should be aware that the animal is trying to be protective and, in its confusion, is not to automatically be considered harmful.  The Campus Safety Officers or First Responders should make every effort to keep the animal with its handler. However, the Campus Safety or First Responder’s primary effort should be toward the handler; this may necessitate leaving the animal behind in certain emergency evacuation situations.

F.       Service Dogs in Training

A dog being trained has the same rights as a fully trained dog when accompanied by a trainer and identified as such in any place of public accommodation.  Handlers of service dogs in training must also adhere to the requirements for service animals and are subject to the removal policies as outlined in this policy.

III.    The College of Idaho’s Policy on Assistance Animals

In compliance with applicable law, The College of Idaho generally allows assistance animals in the private living spaces of its residence halls and other housing environments when the animal is accompanying a resident with a disability who has documented that the animal provides assistance necessary to that resident as a result of their disability.

The College of Idaho may not permit assistance animals when the animal poses a substantial and direct threat to health or safety, or when the presence of the animal constitutes a fundamental alteration to the nature of the program or service.  The College of Idaho will make those determinations on a case-by-case basis.

A.       The College of Idaho’s Inquiries Regarding Assistance Animals

To determine whether or not an assistance animal could be allowed as a reasonable accommodation, the Office of Residence Life will ask for reliable documentation verifying that the student has a disability, and that the assistance animal provides a disability-related need.

B.      Responsibilities of Handlers

Handlers are responsible for any damage or injuries caused by their animals and must take appropriate precautions to prevent property damage or injury. The cost of care, necessary arrangements, and responsibilities for the well-being of an assistance animal are the sole responsibility of the handler at all times. Handlers must meet with the Office of Residence Life and complete a form regarding the assistance animal before the animal is allowed in College of Idaho housing.      

1. Assistance Animal Control Requirements

  • The animal should be under the full control of the handler at all times.
  • To the extent possible, the assistance animal should be unobtrusive to other individuals and the learning and living environment.

2. Animal Etiquette

To the extent possible, the handler should ensure that the animal does not:

  • Display any behaviors or noises that are disruptive to others, unless part of the service being provided the handler.
  • Block an aisle or passageway for fire egress.

3. Waste Cleanup Rule

Cleaning up after the animal is the sole responsibility of the handler.  In the event that the handler is not physically able to clean up after the animal, it is then the responsibility of the handler to hire someone capable of cleaning up after the animal.  The person cleaning up after the animal should abide by the following guidelines:

  • Always carry equipment sufficient to clean up the animals feces whenever the animal is on campus.
  • Properly dispose of waste and/or litter in appropriate containers. In a residence hall, this means the dumpster outside of the building.
  • Contact staff if arrangements are needed to assist with cleanup.  Any cost incurred for doing so is the sole responsibility of the handler.
  • If the animal’s waste creates a noxious odor or a community disturbance, the presence of the assistance animals will be re-evaluated.

2. Emergency Contact

 
The handler must provide the College with an emergency contact who can pick up and take care of the assistance animal, should the handler not be able to do so.

C.      Removal of Assistance Animals

Assistance Animals may be ordered removed by The College for the following reasons:

  1. Out of control animal: A handler may be directed to remove an animal that is out of control and the handler does not take effective action to control it.  If the improper animal behavior happens repeatedly, the handler may be prohibited from bringing the animal into any college housing until the handler can demonstrate that he/she had taken significant steps to mitigate the behavior.
  2. Non-housebroken Animal: A handler may be directed to remove any animal that is not housebroken.
  3. Direct Threat: A handler may be directed to remove an animal that The College of Idaho determines to be a substantial and direct threat to the health and safety of individuals.  This may occur as a result of a very ill animal, or a substantial lack of cleanliness of the animal.

Where a service or assistance animal is properly removed pursuant to this policy, The College of Idaho will work with the handler to determine a reasonable alternative without having the service animal on the premises.

D.      Conflicting Disabilities

Some people may have allergic reactions to animals that are substantial enough to qualify as disabilities.  The College of Idaho will consider the needs of both persons in meeting its obligations to reasonably accommodate all disabilities and to resolve the problem as efficiently and expeditiously as possible.  Student requesting allergy accommodations should contact the Learning Support and Disabilities Services Department.

E.       Emergency Response

Emergency Situations – In the event of an emergency, Campus Safety Officers or First Responders will attempt to recognize assistance animals and be aware that the animal may be trying to communicate the need for help.  The animal may become disoriented from the smell of smoke, from sirens or wind noise, or from shaking and moving ground. Both the handler and animal may be confused from the stressful situation. The Campus Safety Officers or First Responders should be aware that the animal is trying to be protective and, in its confusion, is not to automatically be considered harmful. Campus Safety Officers or First Responders should make every effort to keep the animal with its handler. However, the Campus Safety Officers or First Responder’s first effort will be toward the handler; this may necessitate leaving the animal behind in certain emergency evacuation situations.

F.       Maintenance

Facilities staff will be notified by the Office of Residence Life of the presence of the animal. In the event of routine maintenance or maintenance requiring immediate access to the handler’s room, Facilities staff will take precautions to keep the animal safe, but the responsibility to control the animal lies with the handler. Every attempt will be made to notify the handler that Facilities staff must enter their room.