Service Animal Rules and Exeptions

There are few rules and exceptions to owning a service animal. However, there are quite a few inquiries, exclusions, charges, and other specific rules that apply to owning and allowing the service animal in public.


When it is not obvious what service an animal provides, staff members are only allowed to ask two questions: 1) Is the service animal required because of a disability, and 2) what work or task has the animal been trained to do. Staff cannot ask about the person’s disability, require medical documentation, require a special identification card or training documentation, or ask that the animal demonstrate its ability to perform the work or task.


Allergies and fear of animals are not valid reasons for denying a service animal access to a public space. If a person who is allergic to an animal must be in the same room as a person who requires the assistance of that specific service animal, they both should be accommodated by assigning them to different locations in the room or facility.


Establishments that sell or prepare food must allow service animals, even if state or local health codes prohibit animals on the premises. Staff are also not required to care for or provide food for the service animal.

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