Service animals on campus

To: UC Santa Cruz Community

From: Ashish Sahni (Campus ADA Compliance Officer)

Please be aware that service animals (dogs) are welcome and important members of the campus community, and you may encounter service dogs with their owners at multiple campus locations.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) defines service animals as dogs individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability. The work or task that the dog performs is directly related to the individual’s disability, and can include a wide variety of services, such as:

•       Assist those with low vision;

•       Alert individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing;

•       Pull a wheelchair;

•       Retrieve items such as medicine or the telephone;

•       Recognize and assist during seizures;

•       Remind handler to take medication;

•       Detect, prevent or interrupt the onset of a panic attack, or unwanted behaviors;

•       Assist with balance or stability.

Please be aware that some individuals using service animals do not have an obvious disability. Service dogs are not required to wear a vest or carry an identification card. To prevent misunderstandings and inappropriate inquiries, if you see a dog that you believe is not a service animal, we suggest that you do not directly confront or question the person with the dog.  

The campus policy regarding service animals with appropriate contact information may be found at

Concerns about a service animal’s behavior may be directed to the Associate Vice Chancellor of Risk and Safety Services, (831) 459-3031. In case of an emergency related to safety, please call 911.

We appreciate your help in making UCSC a welcoming environment for people with disabilities and their service animals.

Questions regarding this email may be directed to Susan Willats, (831) 459-3759.