UCR Policies and Procedures

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Currently Under Review

For additional information, contact the Office of Campus Compliance (2-8246)

Campus Policy Number:               850-38

Policy Topic:                                    Pets on Campus

Policy Owner:                                 Associate Vice Chancellor,

                                                          Physical Plant, Transportation, & EH&S

Effective Date:                               09/23/2010



A.            Introduction and Overview


One of the primary goals of the University of California, Riverside (UCR) is to promote a safe and healthy atmosphere for students, faculty, staff, and visitors on the campus.    Exposure to pets on campus may pose risks of animal bites, excessive noise or disruption, and disease transmission via fleas, ticks, parasites, etc.  It may also pose a risk to those individuals with allergies or asthma.  Pets on campus may also cause damage to grounds, buildings, and property, and pose a significant liability risk to UCR.


This policy is intended to clarify under what conditions pets may be allowed on the UCR campus. 

It applies to all individuals on the UCR campus.  The UCR campus, for the purposes of this policy, includes all nonresidential UCR-owned, leased, or managed grounds, buildings and vehicles.  For information regarding pets in UCR residence halls and apartments, refer to the current applicable UCR Student Resident Handbook.


B.            Background and Related References


Any animal brought onto the UCR campus for the purposes of teaching, research, or testing must be approved by the UCR Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC).  These animals are not considered pets or service animals.


California state law requires every dog to be licensed locally, displaying the license tag upon the collar of the dog.  Riverside County has ordinances regarding the mandatory licensing of dogs.


While the practice of occasionally bringing pets onto the UCR campus is not prohibited in certain approved circumstances, guidance concerning the presence of these animals and the responsibilities of their respective owners is necessary to preclude these pets from becoming threats, nuisances, health risks, or undesired distractions to others on campus.


C.            Definitions


Domestic Animal:             An animal that is sufficiently tame to live with a family.


Leash:                                   A length of chain, rope, or strap attached to the collar or harness of an animal, especially a dog, and used to lead it or hold it in check.

Pet:                                        Any domestic animal that is kept and cared for as a companion.


Service Animal:                 Any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability.  Other species of animals, whether wild or domestic, trained or untrained, are not service animals for the purposes of this definition.  The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the handler´s disability. Examples of work or tasks include, but are not limited to, assisting individuals who are blind or have low vision with navigation and other tasks, alerting individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to the presence of people or sounds, providing non-violent protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, assisting an individual during a seizure, alerting individuals to the presence of allergens, retrieving items such as medicine or the telephone, providing physical support and assistance with balance and stability to individuals with mobility disabilities, and helping persons with psychiatric and neurological disabilities by preventing or interrupting impulsive or destructive behaviors.  The crime deterrent effects of an animal´s presence and the provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship do not constitute work or tasks for the purposes of this definition.


D.            Policy


UCR is not responsible for the care or supervision of any pet brought on to the UCR campus.  While on the UCR campus, pets must be attended to and restrained at all times (i.e., controlled by the responsible individual with a leash attached to a collar or harness worn by the animal or by being kept in an appropriately sized cage or container).  All pets brought to campus must meet applicable regulatory requirements for vaccinations, licensing, etc.  Pets that pose an immediate threat to the safety of the UCR community are not allowed on campus (e.g., sick, vicious, or otherwise dangerous pets, including animals with a history of biting people). 


In general, individuals are prohibited from bringing any pet into a UCR-owned, operated, or leased building.  An exception to this policy may be considered by the appropriate Vice Chancellor or Dean.


An animal trained to provide a service in support of a mentally, physically, or an emotionally disabled individual, may enter UCR-owned, operated, or leased buildings as dictated by the needs of the individual who it is serving.  A service animal in training may enter UCR-owned, operated, or leased facilities upon the approval of the appropriate Vice Chancellor or Dean.  UCR is not responsible for the care or supervision of service animal.


No pet may be transported in a university vehicle, with the exception of a service animal.  A service animal must be placed in an appropriate carrier when being transported in a university vehicle.


No pet may be brought to a UCR-sponsored fenced or unfenced outdoor event.  A service animal accompanied by a disabled individual requiring its assistance may attend these events.


Pet and service animal handlers are responsible and liable for their pets at all times while the pets are on the UCR campus.  Any injury to a member of the UCR community or damages to UCR property by a pet or service animal will be the responsibility of the pet or service animal handler.  No animal shall be left unattended in a vehicle parked on the UCR campus for any length of time that poses a hazard to the welfare of the animal or nuisance to the community.   


E.            Procedures (Roles and Responsibilities)


1.            Campus Community


·         Every individual of the UCR community has a responsibility to observe and adhere to this policy.  Violations of this policy may be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with appropriate personnel policies or union contracts.


2.          Pet Owner/Handler


·         Any UCR faculty or staff member, wanting to bring a pet into any UCR-owned, leased, or managed building must request approval from the appropriate Vice Chancellor or Dean.  Written documentation detailing the reason for the request, either in hard copy or electronic format, is to be provided by the individual.  Each approved request will be communicated by the Vice Chancellor or Dean to the Associate Vice Chancellor Physical Plant, Transportation and EH&S and maintained on file in the office of the respective Vice Chancellor or Dean.

·         Each person bringing a pet on campus is responsible for immediately collecting and properly disposing of fecal matter deposited by the pet while on campus.  The waste may be collected in a plastic bag and deposited in an outdoor trash receptacle.

·         Each person bringing a pet on campus is responsible and liable for its conduct.  A person accompanied by a pet may be asked to immediately leave the campus with the animal if it is determined that the animal is creating a nuisance or is a safety risk.    Any injury to a member of the UCR community or damages to UCR property by a pet will be the responsibility of the owner.

·         No pet shall be left unattended or tethered to an object while on UCR property.  Riverside County Animal Control Services will be contacted to remove and impound any unattended animal found on UCR property, including an animal left in a private vehicle.  An owner of an impounded animal is responsible for paying the cost of impounding the animal, as well as any licensing fees, as applicable.  A pet owner may also be charged with a misdemeanor for an act classified as cruel, including abandonment.       


3.            Service Animal Owner/Handler


·         Before entering the UCR campus, any faculty or staff member who uses a service animal for assistance should notify the respective supervisor, department head, Dean, or Vice Chancellor to ensure the proper accommodations are in place within the work area and building where the service animal will remain for extended periods of time.  Similarly, any UCR student who uses a service animal for assistance should contact UCR Student Special Services, before entering the UCR campus with the service animal. 

·         The individual responsible for the service animal must immediately collect and properly dispose of its fecal wastes.  Fecal matter may be collected in a plastic bag and deposited in an outdoor waste receptacle.   


4.            Associate Vice Chancellor, Physical Plant, Transportation, & EH&S


·         May make exceptions to this policy for those UCR-owned, leased, and managed facilities not under the direct purview of a Vice Chancellor or a Dean, as well as all outdoor areas on the UCR campus; and

·         Provides guidance and assistance to the UCR community at large on matters pertaining to this policy area.


                5.            Vice Chancellors and Deans


·         Ensure distribution of this policy throughout their organization;

·         Include this policy in faculty, staff, and student orientation documentation;

·         May make documented exceptions for a pet to enter and remain within a building for which they are responsible; and

·         Ensure all approved requests for exceptions to the policy are communicated to the Associate Vice Chancellor, Physical Plant, Transportation and EH&S, and are kept on file.


F.            Frequently Asked Questions


Direct any general questions about this UCR Campus Policy 850-38, Pets on Campus, to the Office of the Associate Vice Chancellor, Physical Plant, Transportation and EH&S, at (951) 827-3974 or via email at UCRpolicy@ucr.edu.  For specific issues, the following table is provided.






Damage to UCR Facilities

UCR Physical Plant


UCR Physical Plant

Damage to UCR Grounds

UCR Building Services


UCR Building Services


Immediate Assistance

UCR Police Department

9-1-1 (campus phone)


UCR Police Department

Service/Comfort Animals (Students)

UCR Student Services


UCR Student Services

Health and Safety




*Local Leash &

   Licensing  Laws

City of Riverside Municipal Code


Riverside Municipal Code

Nuisance Complaints

UCR Police Department

Riverside County Animal Control Services



UCR Police Department

Riverside Municipal Code

Research Animals




Residence Halls (Students)

UCR Housing Services


UCR Housing

                * These leash and licensing laws are applicable only within the city of Riverside.


G.           References and Resources


·         28 CFR Part 35 (et. al)

·         California Penal Code, Section 626.6

·         California Food & Agricultural Code, Section 30502

·         California Civil Code, Section 54.1 b (6) (C)

·         California Health & Safety Code, Section 122335

·         California Penal Code 597.7

·         County of Riverside Ordinance No. 630 Relating to Dogs & Cats

H.           Feedback


For comments or questions regarding this policy, please contact either the UCR Director of Risk Management, at (951) 827-5892 or the Office of the Associate Vice Chancellor, Physical Plant, Transportation, & EH&S, at (951) 827-3974 or via email at UCRpolicy@ucr.edu.