Use of Service Animals at UTMB

Feb 15, 2023, 17:46 PM by Alexa Akim

UTMB follows the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act as Amended (ADAAA) regarding the appropriate use of service animals at our facilities.

A service animal is defined by the ADA as any breed and size of dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with disabilities.

Some common tasks include:

  • Guiding a person who is blind or has low vision
  • Alerting a person to a sound
  • Pulling a wheelchair
  • Alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure
  • Reminding a person to take medication
  • Calming a person during an anxiety attack
  • Retrieving dropped items, pressing elevator buttons, etc.

The work or tasks a service animal has been trained to provide must be directly related to the person’s disability. A dog whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support does not qualify as a service animal under the ADA.

A service animal is not required to be certified or go through a professional training program and does not have to wear a vest or other type of identification.

Employee requiring the use of a service animal in the workplace must have a permanent job accommodation.

To request an accommodation, please contact UTMB’s Institutional ADA Office at or (409) 747-4818. All accommodations are considered on an individual basis through a collaborative process.

Related Resources
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) website
UTMB Service Animals Policy
Employee Accommodations website