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This policy is intended to further the KU Medical Center’s commitment to the inclusiveness of individuals with disabilities in the University community by describing the conditions under which service animals may be present in University buildings, and specify when other animals are permitted on campus.

Applies to: 

Anyone on University property

Medical Center, Kansas City
Policy Statement: 

In accordance with Federal and State law, the KU Medical Center prohibits the presence of animals into University buildings except as provided in this policy.


Service Animals:  Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), a service animal is defined as any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability.  Other species of animals, whether wild or domestic, trained or untrained, are not service animals under the ADA, though in some cases the University may permit miniature horses on campus consistent with applicable law.  The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the individual’s disability.  Examples of such work or tasks include guiding people with visual impairments, alerting people with hearing impairments, pulling a wheelchair, alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure, reminding a person with a mental illness to take prescribed medications, calming a person with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder during an anxiety attack, or performing other duties. 

Service animals accompanying individuals with disabilities will generally be allowed in University buildings in all areas where the public is normally allowed to go.  For example, a service animal would not ordinarily be excluded from class rooms, patient care areas, or cafeterias but may be excluded from areas where the animal’s presence may compromise a sterile environment or pose a danger or safety hazard in a particular situation.

Assistance Animals:  Animals whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support are not considered service animals.  Assistance animals generally are not permitted on campus.   An employee or student may request use of an assistance animal as a reasonable accommodation because of their disability, which will be reviewed on a case by case basis.  Employee accommodation policies and procedures can be found on the Human Resources webpage at:http://www.kumc.edu/human-resources/accommodation-policy.html.  Student accommodation policies and procedures can be found at http://policy.ku.edu/KUMC/student-services/ADA-manual.

Research Animals: Animals used for research, teaching, and testing must be registered with and approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC).  IACUC policies and procedures can be found on the Office of Animal Welfare website at: http://www.kumc.edu/office-of-animal-welfare.html.

Animals for Other Educational Purposes: Animals used in demonstrations for non-research, educational purposes must be approved in advance by the Vice Chancellor for Administration or the appropriate school’s dean if related to coursework within a specific school. 


Restrictions: The University may exclude or restrict an animal for any of the following reasons:

  • If the animal is not housebroken
  • If the animal would pose a direct threat to the health, safety, or property of others that cannot be reduced or eliminated by a reasonable accommodation
  • If the animal is out of control and the individual does not take effective action to control it
  • If the animal’s assistance would fundamentally alter the nature of the program or activity or eliminate an essential function of their job duties
  • If the animal is not being cared for by the individual

Inquiries:  With regard to service animals, if it is not apparent what service an animal is providing, University staff may ask: 1) is the service animal required because of a disability; and 2) what work or task has the service animal been trained to perform.  Staff may not inquire as to the individual’s disability or request medical documentation of the individual or certification documentation of the service animal unless the individual is an employee who requests the use of the animal as a reasonable accommodation.   Additionally, University staff involved in reviewing accommodation requests for service or assistance animals are not prohibited from requesting appropriate documentation in connection with such requests.  

Responsibilities of Individuals:  Individuals accompanied by service or other animals are responsible for the control of their animals at all times and for ensuring the immediate clean-up and disposal of animal waste.  Individuals must comply with all applicable laws and regulations, including vaccination, licensure, animal health and leash laws.  Individuals may also be charged for damage caused by their animal in the same manner the University imposes charges for damage to property. 


The KU Medical Center prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, retaliation and genetic information in the university’s programs and activities. Inquiries regarding the University’s non-discrimination policies should be directed to the Director of the University’s Equal Opportunity Office, at 913-588-8011 or http://www.kumc.edu/compliance-services/office-of-compliance/equal-opportunity-office.html.

If an individual disagrees with any restriction imposed on their service or assistance animal or otherwise believes they have been denied a reasonable accommodation or discriminated against based on a disability, the individual should contact the University’s Equal Opportunity Office at 913-588-8011 or file a complaint in accordance with the KU Medical Center’s Discrimination Complaint Resolution Process


EOO Director 913-588-1206

Approved by: 
Vice Chancellor for Administration
Approved on: 
Thursday, May 19, 2016
Effective on: 
Thursday, May 19, 2016
Review Cycle: 
Biennial (Every Two Years)

Assistance Animals:  Dogs that provide comfort or emotional support but do not function as service animals.

Individuals with Disabilities:  An individual who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity.

Reasonable Accommodations: any change, service or assistive device that enables an individual to have an equal opportunity in employment or in the participation of educational programs and activities and which does not pose an undue burden or eliminate an essential job function or fundamentally alter an educational program or activity.

Service Animals:  Dogs and, in some instances, miniature horses that are trained to do work or perform tasks for individuals with disabilities.

Service animals, pets, emotional support animals
Review, Approval & Change History: 

05/23/2016: Updated formatting and hyperlinked text in relation policies and other sections.

05/23/2016: New, approved by EOO director, Associate Vice Chancellor for Human Resources, KUMC Office of General Counsel

Operational Categories: 
Personnel: Administrators Categories: 
Workplace Rules & Guidelines
Personnel: Affiliates/Volunteers Categories: 
Workplace Rules & Guidelines
Personnel: Faculty/Academic Staff Categories: 
Workplace Rules & Guidelines
Personnel: Staff Categories: 
Workplace Rules & Guidelines
Personnel: Student Employees Categories: 
Workplace Rules & Guidelines
Research and Sponsored Projects Category: 
Research and Sponsored Projects
Student Life Categories: 
Assistance with Disabilities

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