Service and Emotional Support Animals

Service Animals

Under the ADA, a service animal is defined as a dog that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability.  The task(s) performed by the dog must be directly related to the person's disability. State and local governments, businesses, and nonprofit organizations that serve the public generally must allow service animals to accompany people with disabilities in all areas of the facility where the public is normally allowed to go. Please note: it is illegal in New Hampshire to misrepresent a dog as a service animal.

For more information from the Department of Justice:

Frequently Asked Questions

Emotional Support Animals

An Emotional Support Animal (ESA) is an animal that provides emotional support which alleviates one or more identified symptoms or effects of an individual’s disability. Unlike a service animal, an Emotional Support Animal is not trained to perform a task for a person with a disability relating to activities of daily living or to accompany that person at all times. As a result, ESA's are subject to restriction from any area with a no-pet policy.


Service animals are by law allowed to accompany their handler anywhere the general public is allowed. That same law does not apply to emotional support animals. Individuals who wish to bring an emotional support animal onto campus must request an accommodation. Students should contact Student Accessibility Services for campus housing accommodation as provided for under the Fair Housing Act. Employees who require an ESA in the workplace due to a disability should contact the EEO/ADA Compliance Officer in the Affirmative Action and Equity Office as regulated by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

UNH Service Animal/Emotional Support Animal Policy

Please be aware of the UNH ESA Policy as you prepare documentation, especially the use of online registries, which may not provide adequate support for your accommodation request.