Service Dog Policy
Potawatomi Zoo welcomes guests with disabilities who are accompanied by a trained service dog, in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
ONLY WORKING SERVICE ANIMALS, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE AMERICAN WITH DISABILITIES ACT (ADA), ARE ALLOWED AT POTAWATOMI ZOO.
Under the ADA, “a service animal is a dog that has been individually trained to work or perform tasks for assisting a person with a disability.” Service dogs are working animals, not pets. Dogs whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the ADA. Pets, comfort animals, emotional support or therapy animals are not permitted at the Zoo.
Public safety and animal welfare are the top priority at Potawatomi Zoo. As stipulated by the ADA, Zoo staff may request that a service dog experiencing difficulty or demonstrating problematic behaviors, such as barking or lunging, be removed from the Zoo immediately. We ask that you promptly comply with any such request for the safety and welfare of all.
In compliance with ADA, service dogs are not permitted at any of our animal encounters. Guests with service dogs wanting to attend an Animal Encounter are to contact Guest Services prior to visiting the zoo.
Service Animals are to follow the below guidelines:
- Guests with service dogs are required to stop at Admissions upon arrival to receive current information about their visit.
- Service animals must be on duty and serving in their official capacity and under the control of a handler at all times.
- The owner of the service animal is solely responsible for its care and supervision, including feeding and waste disposal.
- Under the ADA, service animals must be harnessed, leashed, or tethered unless these devices interfere with the service animal’s work or the individual’s disability prevents using these devices.
- If either a zoo animal or service dog become visibly upset or agitated by the other’s presence, the handler and service animal must move away from that exhibit immediately.
- If either a zoo animal or service dog are visibly upset or agitated by the other’s presence, the handler and service animal must move away from that exhibit immediately. Signs of agitation include, but are not limited to: barking, howling, growling, bumping into exhibit window or walls, jumping, climbing, running around exhibit and/or erratic movements. At no time should a service dog be in contact with fences, mesh, wire, railings, glass or other exhibit barriers.
For a printable version of this policy, click HERE.