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Service Animals

In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), service animals are permitted in college facilities. Service animals are animals trained to assist people with disabilities in the activities of daily living. The (ADA) definition of service animals is: “…a dog that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including, but not limited to, guiding individuals with impaired vision, alerting individuals who are hearing impaired to intruders or sounds, providing minimal protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, or fetching dropped items."  The rule permits the use of trained miniature horses as alternatives to dogs, subject to certain limitations.  To allow flexibility in situations where using a horse would not be appropriate, the final rule does not include miniature horses in the definition of "service animal." Students with service animals who will be attending class with them are asked to check in with the WVC Student Access office or Human Resources.

Download: Service Animal Guide


Owner/Handler - a person with a service animal

Service Animal - a dog individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability. Service animals are generally dogs; sometimes miniature horses are used as service animals.

Service Animal-In-Training - a dog being trained to become a service animal.  Service animals-in-training require college permission to enter a building or facility.

Therapy Animal - animal with good temperament and disposition with reliable, predictable behavior, usually selected to visit people with disabilities or people who are experiencing the frailties of aging as a therapy tool. The animal may be incorporated as an integral part of a treatment process. A therapy animal does not assist an individual with a disability in the activities of daily living. A therapy animal does not accompany a person with a disability all the time, whereas a service animal is always with its partner. A therapy animal is not covered by the laws protecting and giving rights to service animals. Therapy animals are typically dogs.

Requirements of Service Animals and Their Owners/Handlers

Under Control of Owner/Handler

The owner/handler must be in full control of the animal at all times. The care and supervision of a service animal is solely the responsibility of its owner/handler.

Leash - The animal must be on a leash at all times.

Licensing and Tags - The City of Wenatchee Municipal Code [5.28.150] “All dogs and cats over 6 months of age…shall have current rabies vaccination”; [5.28.015] “Any owner of a dog or cat four months old or older must obtain valid license.”

Responsibilities for Employees and Students

  • Allow a service animal to accompany the owner/handler on campus except, where service animals are specifically prohibited. Students with service dogs should be allowed to sit where their dogs can be out of the traffic flow and where the dogs are not blocking exits. 
  • Service dogs are expected to be on leashes at all times and are trained to assist their owner/handlers. 
  • Such dogs are “working” dogs; it is appropriate to either ignore them or to ask the owner/handlers’ permission to pay attention to the dog.
  •  Do not feed, pet or deliberately startle a service animal.
  •  Do not separate or attempt to separate a handler from his or her animal.

For practical purposes, we encourage students with disabilities who use service animals to identify the working status of the animal with a harness, cape or identification tag that readily identifies its working status.  Members of the campus community are reminded that service animals are not pets and interferences with a service animal is a crime under Washington state law.

When an Owner/Handler May Be Asked to Remove an Animal

Disruption -  an owner/handler may be asked to remove an animal from college facilities that is unruly or disruptive. If the improper behavior occurs repeatedly, the owner/handler may be told not to bring the animal into any college facility until the owner/handler has taken significant steps to mitigate the behavior.