Emotional Support Animal Requests

The emotional support animal (ESA) process begins with Disability Services.

A student who has a documented disability, must submit that documentation to Disability Services for review. This documentation must show consistent care with a provider who can give a diagnosis(es) and be able to validate an accommodation for an ESA.

You can submit this documentation to Disability Services by fax (563-387-1411), email (disabilityservices@luther.edu), or personally bring it to the office (located in Preus Library, room 108). The provider should use their own letterhead for documentation.

Students will then meet with the Disability Services to discuss further. The request may be approved or more documentation may be required to proceed.

Once approved, Disability Services will send a housing request to Residence Life where they will have 60 days to provide options to the student.

Under no circumstances, can an animal be on the Luther College campus until the student has been through the entire ESA process with both Disability Services and Residence Life. An ESA on campus when not approved is considered a prohibited possession. An ESA is only approved to be on campus after Residence Life has provided final approval.

How to Apply for an Emotional Support Animal Accommodation

  1. Students must first submit the online request accommodation form.

    Request an Accommodation

  2. The accommodation to have an ESA are valid for the current academic year and must be renewed each academic year.
    Priority Deadline Dates:

    • November 1 for current students for the upcoming spring semester
    • March 1 for current students for the upcoming academic year: Updated documentation and request for the specific housing accommodation must be submitted to Disability Services by March 1
    • May 1 for current students requesting an accommodation request for the summer semester
    • June 1 for incoming new and first-year students for the upcoming academic year: Request for specific housing accommodation and documentation must be submitted to Disability Services by June 1While applications submitted after these dates will be accepted and considered, we cannot guarantee the ESA will be able to come on campus at the beginning of the academic year.
  3. In order to determine eligibility, the student must meet and speak with Disability Services and provide documentation that supports how the ESA supports the disabling condition.
  4. Disability Services will review your documentation to determine whether you are eligible to receive an ESA accommodation.

ESA Accommodation Documentation

All disabilities must be documented by a licensed provider with expertise in the area of diagnosis. Additionally, an ongoing relationship with the provider should be demonstrated. Ongoing relationship with the provider is defined as 1 year. When this is not possible, Disability Services will work with the student to discuss potential options for obtaining documentation.

Please make sure that your medical/mental health provider completes the Required Documentation Form. Information about the diagnosis and treatment of your condition remains confidential.

Please note that providing the college with medical documentation does not guarantee an ESA accommodation.

The following documents are not considered acceptable forms of documentation:

  • Documentation from an unlicensed or non-healthcare provider
  • Correspondence from healthcare providers not directly addressed to Luther College’s Disability Services
  • Handwritten patient records or notes from patient charts
  • Diagnosis on prescription pads
  • Self-evaluation found on the internet or in any print publication
  • Research articles