Service Dogs Are Going to College

Some people benefit from having a service animal to navigate college (and life). These animals are frequently permitted in public places such as dormitories, apartments, and classrooms.

However, we get started on what is needed to bring your service animal to college. Let’s break down the two major groups of personal service animals.

a dog chewing on a grass-fed chew

Service Animals

First, let’s talk about neuroglial service animals. Animals in this group are trained to sense when their owner is about to have a panic attack or seizure or other complication that can cause them harm, and then take action to help calm the person down or prevent an incident.

The second group of service animals is what you commonly think of when you think of service animals. These fantastic animals are specially bred and trained to help blind or visually impaired people get around safely and take care of everyday tasks.

Here are just a few ways that these dogs help:

  • Retrieve the mail
  • Open the refrigerator
  • Pick up keys or other objects from the floor
  • Turn on and off light switches
  • and more.

Emotional Support Animals

The second type of service animal is an emotional support animal. These animals provide companionship, stability, and love for people with mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, or bipolar disorder. However, they do not have the same legal rights as service animals.


Unlike a service animal who is specifically bred and trained to do work or tasks, an emotional support animal does not have any specialized training. However, there are different laws surrounding these two types of working animals. Furthermore, the ADA doesn’t always protect emotional support animals in the same way.


We touched on these differences early because the differences are essential when working with your college. If you want to bring your service animal or emotional support animal to school, the first thing you need to do is contact the school’s Office of Disability Services.

While service dogs don’t seem to have troubles, in comparison, a horse that is used as a service animal might be a little unexpected. The Fair Housing Amendments Act allows emotional support animals. However, there may be different regulations, so it’s best to check. Some colleges may ask you to provide documentation from your doctor or psychiatrist.


College is a new and exciting experience for many people. And while it can be an enjoyable time, people who rely on a service animal may have some anxiety about embarking on this next adventure.

Students who need service animals to help them manage their day-to-day lives may feel frightened of what this means for their education and independence. But with their trusty animal companion, there are ways to make sure that life at school goes smoothly.


It is vital to keep your service animal on a leash or tethered at all times unless it would impede the animal’s ability to perform its duties when going around campus with it. Keeping your service animal under control may include using voice, hand signals, or other controls to maintain control. Furthermore, your service animal should never be disruptive during classes—with the only exception being it performing its job to assist you.

Before you begin attending classes, talk to your professors and take a look at your classroom. Take the time to come up with a plan for keeping your service animal safe.

Looking for a way to distract your service dog while you are in class? Barking Buddha has a full line of chews to satisfy any dog’s chewing needs. Shop today.

When it comes to having your service animal in public places, there are two questions that your professors can ask:

  • Is this a service animal?
  • What work or task is it trained to perform?

Your college might have a voluntary registry program for service animals that alerts staff to look for your animal during emergencies. However, this is not always mandated.


Service animals have been a part of our society for centuries. These wonderful animal companions help people with disabilities and medical conditions to live healthier, happier lives. And even assist them in attending college.

However, because these dogs can come in various sizes and breeds, it can be hard to deter the public from interacting with your working dog.


One study from the Anxiety and Depression Association of America found that students experience stress and anxiety in staggering numbers.

The study showed that 30% of students said stress affects their academic performance, while more than 41% said anxiety was a top concern. More than 80% of students mentioned that they often felt overwhelmed by demands and expectations.

Carol O’Saben, Licensed psychologist and pet therapy expert sees the value and a connection between the rise of pet therapy programs and college student needs over the past decade. She spoke out about colleges offering pet therapy programs, “The first and most obvious reason colleges are adopting pet therapy programs is that most college students have to leave their pets behind when they go to college, and they miss them.”

Pets are often used for companionship, but they also have many other benefits. Service animals can be a source of comfort and joy to those who live with them, easing the stress that comes from living in an increasingly fast-paced world.

And that can be life-changing for college students. Therapy animals can also aid students in socializing. Animals are superheroes and can help college students feel more comfortable interacting with their peers. Students who have pets at home or service animals can relate to others easier. Furthermore, service dogs can help college students enjoy a typical college experience.

A dog chewing on a braided bully stick.


In recent years, more and more people with disabilities have been bringing animals to college. Bringing a service animal to college can help students stay happy, healthy, and productive.

More animals are being used, but there is not enough shared knowledge about the benefits. However, those people who utilize these animals are living full college lives. College students are already under a lot of stress, which is only going to increase in the future. A service animal can help alleviate some of that stress and anxiety.

Service animals have been a part of our society for centuries. These wonderful animal companions help people with disabilities and medical conditions to live healthier, happier lives. And even assist them in attending college. However, because these dogs can come with their own struggles, it can be hard to deter the public from interacting with your working dog.

Barking Buddha believes in education for all. Give your hard-working service dog a break with a delicious chew. Shop today!

Shopping Cart