Assistance Animal in PSU Housing

PSU's Assistance Animal Policy

Before you bring an assistance animal to campus, you should familiarize yourself with PSU's Assistance Animal Policy so that you understand the difference between a service dog and a support animal, and the rules that govern each type of animal. 

Service Animal

Your service dog is welcome at P.S.U., and you do not need to register with the DRC to have a service dog in P.S.U. Campus Housing.

A "service animal" means a dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability. The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the person's disability.

If you plan to live in P.S.U. Campus Housing, keep in mind that some people may be allergic to dogs. You may want to notify Housing and/or your roommate that you have a service dog in advance of moving in (if possible) so that they know what to expect. You do not need to tell your roommate about your disability or why you have a service dog. If your roommate has allergies or concerns about sharing a space with your service dog, you can refer them to P.S.U. Housing and Residence Life for assistance.

Note: Miniature horses can also be considered service animals but must go through an approval process with the DRC similar to that of a support animal.

Support Animal (SA)

A "support animal (SA)" is an animal that provides emotional or other support that ameliorates one or more identified symptoms or effects of a person's disability. Per the Assistance Animal policy, which references "support animal" (singular), not "support animals" (plural), students may request one SA in P.S.U. Campus Housing. Requests for multiple SAs will be considered in exceptional circumstances.

Unlike service animals, a SA is not required to be trained to perform work or tasks. A SA is generally not allowed to accompany persons with disabilities in all public areas of P.S.U., but a SA may reside with you in University Housing. Before you can bring your SA into campus housing, you need to register with the Disability Resource Center and have the accommodation of a SA in campus housing approved.

Requests for a SA for Fall Term need to be completed before August 31st. Requests that are made and/or completed after August 31st may result in a waiting period of up to one month before the SA can be brought into your dorm room.

Communication With Roommates

Once your accommodation request for a SA is approved by the Disability Resource Center, your roommate will be notified that you are bringing a SA into the room. There may be a waiting period of up to 10 business days before you will be allowed to bring the SA in while we communicate about the change with your roommate.We recommend that you talk with your roommate about your decision to request a SA early on. You do not have to talk about your diagnosis or disability or why you need a SA. If they ask questions that make you uncomfortable, you can tell them you prefer not to talk about it. You can simply tell your roommate you're in the process of requesting a SA and ask them if they have any concerns. Ask them how they feel about animals (dogs, cats, etc.) to get a sense of how open they may be to having a SA in the room.

If your roommate has allergies or concerns  about having an animal in the room, they can talk with P.S.U. Housing and Residence Life about their concerns, and P.S.U. Housing and Residence Life will work with them.

Additional Information Regarding Support Animal (SA) Accommodation Requests

Per Multnomah County regulations, it is illegal to harbor or own certain exotic animals. These include:

  • Any large cat from the genus Panthera including: lion, P. leo; tiger, P. tigris; jaguar, P. onca; leopard, P. pardus; and snow leopard, Uncia uncia; as well as the puma (cougar or mountain lion), Puma concolor; clouded leopard, Neofelis nebulosa; and cheetah, Acinonyx jubatus.
  • Any monkey, ape, gorilla, hybrid thereof, or other non-human primate
  • Any wolf or canine except the species Canis familaris (domestic dog)
  • Any bear
  • Any venomous or poisonous reptile
  • Any reptile of the order Crocodilia (crocodiles, alligators and caimans), or any snake of the family Pythonidae or Boinae capable of obtaining eight feet or more in length

It is also important to note that P.S.U. does not permit live feed for SAs (e.g. mice, cockroaches, crickets, etc.). It will be important to consider this when requesting an SA accommodation.

Once you have been found eligible for an SA accommodation, University Housing and Residence Life (UHRL) maintains pertinent SA health records including vaccination and county licensing information (when applicable). You will be required to provide this information before receiving final approval to keep your SA in P.S.U. housing. We also request that you provide information for someone who may be able to take care of your animal if you are unable to do so in an emergency.


If you have questions about the information on this page, please contact the Disability Resource Center.

Phone: 503-725-4150

Check our home page for hours and Virtual Front Desk information.