Bucknell University recognizes the importance of Emotional Support Animals (ESA) to individuals with disabilities and has established the policy to govern the presence of Emotional Support Animals on campus. The University may amend the policy at any time, with or without prior notice, so please check this site for the most up-to-date policy before bringing an ESA to campus.

PLEASE NOTE: Bucknell University prohibits pets and other animals in University housing. This policy provides a mechanism for an individual with a mental health disability to seek a reasonable accommodation from that prohibition. Please do not request an ESA if you are not an individual with a mental health disability. If you are an individual with a disability and have a Service Animal, please see the University’s Service Animal Policy.


Emotional Support Animal
An “Emotional Support Animal” (ESA) is not a pet. It is an animal that provides emotional support which alleviates one or more identified symptoms or effects of a person's disability and/or provides emotional support to persons with disabilities who have a disability-related need for such support. There must be an identifiable and medically indicated relationship between the individual's disability and the emotional support the animal provides. Unlike a Service Animal, an ESA may not accompany a person with a disability at all times. The law permitting Emotional Support Animals applies ONLY for access to University housing, meaning and individual’s assigned room/living space. ESAs are not permitted in other areas of the university. ESAs approved under Federal Housing regulations are not permitted in other areas of the University.

A Pet is an animal kept for ordinary use and companionship. A pet is not considered a Service or Emotional Support Animal. Please review the Animals on Campus and in Campus Buildings policy for further information.

An ESAs “Owner” is the member of the Bucknell University community with a disability who has received approval for use of the Emotional Support Animal.

Please review the full policy to see information on:

  • Requesting Emotional Support Animals in University Housing
  • Owner’s Responsibilities in University Housing
  • Maintaining an ESA at Bucknell University
  • Removal of the ESA.

Emotional Support Animals may not be brought into University housing without express written approval from the OAR. The University cannot guarantee that it will be able to approve an applicant's request to bring an ESA into University housing.

NOTE: Exotic animals or those animals that pose a disease threat to humans will not be allowed on campus.