Pet-friendly Residence Policy

Pet-friendly Residence Policy


Alfred State is engaged in a pilot project to allow resident students the privilege of having family pets live with them in selected areas on campus. A successful experiment rests upon the willingness of students to abide by and comply with established policies. The owner is financially responsible for the actions of their pet including, but not limited to: bodily injury, housing damages, and campus damages. Participants should be aware that policies will be modified and adapted as needed. Changes will be communicated at implementation.

Policies and Terminology

General Eligibility

Dogs (under 40 pounds when fully grown), domestic cats, and rabbits are considered eligible pets. Pets must be registered with Residential Life before residing on campus. Pets are permitted only in designated areas and certain breeds of dogs and cats, detailed later in this document, are excluded from residence.

One pet per student is permitted in any academic year. Any pet living on campus must be at least one year old and have lived with the student or student's family for at least ten months prior to campus residency to ensure proper acclimation. Pets acquired, either purchased, adopted, or as a stray during the period of student enrollment must meet those same criteria. All pet owners must participate in pet registration which takes place at the start of the fall and spring semesters. Late registrations are allowable at the discretion of Residential Life.

The following breeds, or any mix of these breeds, or any animal exhibiting aggressive tendencies, are not allowed in pet-friendly residence at any time:

  • Alaskan Malamute
  • Beagle
  • Boxer
  • Bull Dog
  • Chihuahua
  • Chow
  • Cocker Spaniel
  • Dachshund
  • Dalmatian
  • Doberman Pinscher
  • Giant Schnauzer
  • German Shepherd
  • Great Dane
  • Jack Russell Terrier
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Mastiff
  • Miniature Pinscher
  • Old English Sheep Dog
  • Papillon
  • Pekinese
  • Pit Bulls
  • Presa Canario
  • Rottweiler
  • Siberian Husky
  • Springer Spaniel
  • Toy Poodle

Bengal cats are also not allowed in residence.

Animals that exhibit aggression towards people or other animals will not be allowed in pet-friendly residence at any time. All animals being considered for the privilege of staying in this pet-friendly residence will be thoroughly scrutinized for behavioral characteristics that may be lead to negative interactions with other pets or people. Those animals that are of classic breeds or breed mixes that are known for their aggressive tendencies will be more stringently scrutinized on an individual basis to assess temperament and behavioral issues that would potentially endanger other pets and people. All animals are subject to behavioral assessment at a level to be determined by the college. Costs associated with such assessments are the responsibility of the pet owner and these behavioral assessments are usually completed by a veterinarian. The assessment is provided with all other required documentation prior to the pet moving into the residence hall. Final determination of acceptable temperament for any animal will be made by the Pet Council and/or the Director of College Housing and in consultation with college faculty and staff in the veterinary technology program.

Alfred State Pet Council

The Pet Council consists of students and staff who are both pet owners and non-pet owners, appointed by the Director of Residential Life for terms or one and two years. The Council operates in concert with Residential Life and the Director of College Housing and is responsible for developing, monitoring, evaluating, and modifying policies and procedures that govern pet-related accommodations.

Members of the Pet Council

  • Director of College Housing, convener
  • Veterinary Technology Faculty Representative
  • Pet-Friendly Building Residence Director
  • Student - Pet-Friendly Building Head Resident Assistant
  • Student - Pet-Friendly Building (but not a resident on the pet-friendly floor)
  • Student – Veterinary Technology

Visiting Pets

Visiting pets are not allowed in residence at any time, even in pet-friendly areas.

Registration and Inoculation

All animals residing in pet-friendly areas must be registered with Residential Life prior to arrival. The registration process may take three and five days to complete; so on-demand registrations are not supported. A $50 registration fee will be charged to the student's account by Residential Life at the time of application. Rejected applications will result in fee removal.

Copies of certifications of all applicable vaccinations, a recent photograph, and physical description of the pet must be provided to the college by the owner at registration. The owner must also provide a statement written no more than thirty days prior to application from the animal’s personal veterinarian, attesting to the pet’s good health and documentation indicating when the behavioral evaluation was completed, by who and the results in regard to animal temperament to live in a residential facility.

Pets must be spayed or neutered and documentation of that procedure must be provided as part of the registration process.

Pets must be in good health while residing on campus. The college's veterinarian can make a recommendation to the Pet Council of any animal that is unfit to live on campus. Costs for that assessment are the responsibility of the pet owner.

Owners also must present certification from their veterinarian that the dog or cat has been in the family for at least one year. All pet registrations are valid for one academic year. Obviously then, owners are not permitted to breed a pet for any purpose.

Alfred State pet ID tags will be provided to the owner during registration. Pets must wear this ID tag at all times. Pet registrations are valid for one academic year. Dog owners are required to show proof that their pet is a graduate of an accredited dog obedience course.

Pet owners must provide proof of flea prevention prescriptions as part of the application process and on demand proof of continuing flea treatment through the period of residency. In the event of flea infestation, pet owners may not personally apply any remedy to eliminate pests in the room. Owners must notify Residential Life and/or Facilities Services to make arrangements for professional services. Pet owners are responsible for all costs associated with any service provided. Facilities staff may not enter a room to make repairs or spray for pests if a pet is present.

Pets encountering skunks or other similar noxious circumstances may not reenter any residential facility. Remediation must be fully complete prior to pet readmission. The cost of remediation is the responsibility of the pet owner.

Rules of Conduct

  1. Regardless of circumstances, the pet owner is ultimately responsible for the actions of the pet.
  2. All dogs and cats must wear their Alfred State identification tag, their pet license and a current rabies vaccination tag (if applicable) at all times.
  3. All pets must live with their owners and cannot be supervised by other pet-friendly residents for any period of time.
  4. Dogs and cats must be housebroken before arriving on campus. Pets are not permitted in residence hall bathrooms. Owners must appropriately dispose of animal waste in identified receptacles. Violations will result in exclusion of the pet from campus facilities.
  5. Pets are not allowed outside of designated residential pet-friendly areas or in academic and administrative buildings, except by appointment in the Agricultural Science Building.
  6. Pets must be under vocal command and under no circumstances are pets allowed to run free either in or outside of campus facilities.
  7. Pets attacking or intimidating other animals or humans will not be tolerated. The Pet Council may take independent action, ranging from ownership probation to the elimination of pet privilege and will refer the case to University Police and/or the Office of Judicial Affairs for conduct action.
  8. Policy violations, owner negligence, and/or mistreatment of a pet will not be tolerated. The Pet Council may take independent action, ranging from ownership probation to the elimination of pet privilege and may refer the case to the Office of Judicial Affairs for conduct action. Costs associated with assessment of pet health are the responsibility of the pet owner. Pet probation prohibits the pet owner from ownership for one year from the date of the decision.
  9. Failure to remove a pet from campus will result in a fee assessment for appropriate outside intervention and pet shelter and/or conduct action.

Failure to comply with residential policies and the Pet Policy and/or requests of the Pet Council, may result in a fee assessment for damages or loss, conduct action, or additional action deemed necessary by the college. The Pet Council and/or the Director of College Housing have the final authority to decide which pets are permitted to reside on campus. The Director of Residential Life will serve as appellate officer for any appeal of a decision.

Owner Responsibility

Pets must be kenneled in the student room during owner absence. If the pet is out of the student room, it must wear an appropriate collar and leash at all times. The leash must be held by a responsible party.

Pets are not permitted on campus during the summer; if a student is enrolled in summer school, he/she must make arrangements to have the pet live off campus.

Other than during class, laboratory experiences, or social absence to attend a college-sponsored event, no pet may be left unattended at any time in a residence hall room/suite. If an owner leaves campus at any time, their pet must be removed to an off campus location.

In accordance with campus policy, dogs and cats must be on a leash or tether when outside of their owner's residence hall. The pet owner will receive one warning if his/her dog or cat is not a leash. On the second offense the pet owner will be automatically placed on pet probation and the incident will be forwarded to the Office of Judicial Affairs. In addition, the pet owner will be asked to meet with the Pet Council to discuss his/her non-compliance with the Pet Policy.

The standard of care for pets in residence is that of Alfred State. Abandonment, neglect and mistreatment of any pet by any member of Alfred State will not be tolerated. No warnings will be issued. In the case of abuse, the pet will be removed from the situation in order to prevent contact with the person(s) responsible for the abuse. These actions will be subject to the discretion of the Pet Council and/or the Director of College Housing and possible referral to the Office of Judicial Affairs for conduct action.

During Fall mini-break, Thanksgiving break, Inter-semester break, Spring break, Summer break or on any weekday or weekend absence in which the pet owner will be away from campus, it is expected that the pet owner will remove the animal from campus. There will be no exception to this rule, and pet owners found in non-compliance will be subjected disciplinary action and pet probation.

No pet is allowed to become a nuisance to the members of the Alfred State community. A nuisance is defined as, but is not limited to, excessive noise, physical harm, or the perception of harm to humans or other animals/pets, and destruction of property. Pet Council reserves the right to deem any other act a nuisance.

Pet owners are responsible for the cost of damages caused by their pets and will be billed regardless of whether the damage is within pet-friendly residence or elsewhere on campus.


The Alfred State Pet Council will meet as necessary to consider complaints. General meetings are open to all students, faculty, and staff who may wish to address the Council.

Each complaint will be handled on an individual basis. The severity of the offense and the discretion of the Pet Council will determine actions taken. Actions may include, but are not limited to warnings or removal of the pet from campus, conduct action, and/or other acts deemed necessary by the Pet Council. Non-compliance with any Pet Council decision may result in the loss of the privilege to reside in pet-friendly housing.

If the Pet Council is notified of any mistreatment or negligence of a pet, or the conditions of the student's specific probation are broken, the Pet Council will investigate the situation and take actions appropriately. If the pet owner is found responsible, the owner's parents will be notified and the student will have one week to remove the pet from campus. If after one week, the pet is still residing on campus, judicial action under Failure to Comply and other applicable statutes will occur. Costs for the removal of the pet are the responsibility of the owner.

Complaint Procedure

Any member of the Alfred State community may file a confidential complaint with the Pet Council on any pet. The complaint may address any form of misconduct or rule violation on the part of the pet or owner. Pet complaint forms are available in pet-friendly residence and the Office of Residential Life.

The accused pet owner involved will be notified of the complaint and will be given information of when a hearing will be scheduled to discuss the alleged complaint. After the hearing, the Pet Council will deliberate and the accused pet owner will receive a written notice of the results. In cases of involving aggressive pet behavior towards another pet or human, the complainant has the right to request notification of the outcome of the complaint.

If any Alfred State student, faculty, or staff member observes a violation of the pet policy, it should be documented and the Pet Council will take appropriate action. If a member of the Pet Council turns in a complaint, that person will not participate in the hearing for the complaint. Please note that unless a complaint form is turned in, no action will be taken.

The Pet Council reserves the right to refer any complaint to the Office of Judicial Affairs.

Pet Owner Probation

A pet owner will be placed on pet probation, and receive written notification of such, for the following reasons, including, but not limited to:

  1. If the student misses the mandatory pet registration without making prior contact with the Pet Council. The pet must be registered with the Pet Council within five days of its arrival on campus.
  2. If the student misses any mandatory meetings set forth by the Pet Council.
  3. Pet owners, who receive special permission from the Pet Council to have a pet on campus that does not approve guidelines, set forth in this policy.
  4. Abuse, neglect, failure to comply with established policies or procedures.

The Pet Council reserves the right to determine the length of probation for any pet owner.

Appeals to the Pet Council

If a pet owner wants to submit or present an appeal because his/her pet does not meet the requirements stated in the Pet Policy, he/she must do so in writing and prior to bringing the pet to campus. In the appeal, he/she must explain why his/her pet should be allowed on campus, the following information should be submitted in writing to the Pet Council:

  1. The age of the pet on the day the appeal was submitted
  2. Where the pet is currently living
  3. When and where the pet was obtained
  4. A thorough pet history, including any prior abuse, and inappropriate interactions with other animals or humans
  5. A thorough explanation of why the pet deserves an exception to the Pet Policy
  6. Plans for the pet if the appeal is not granted.

Applicable Laws

Laws are important to keeping pets and animals safe while they are on the Alfred State campus. The Pet Council encourages faculty, staff, and students to report any concerning circumstance that takes place on campus. The following and other applicable New York State laws are pertinent to this philosophy:

Agriculture and Market Law 353-a

This law states that an individual may not show exceptional cruelty to animals. This translates into not allowing a person to inflict extreme pain on any animal for any reason, especially for enjoyment. Extreme pain consists of any action that causes the animal pain and possible death. Actions such as keeping an animal from food or water, using objects to beat or injure the animal, or overworking an animal so as to cause injury.

Agriculture and Market Law 353-b

Individuals must provide adequate shelter to their animals. A shelter must be large enough for said animal to stand up, lay down and turn around. It must be out of direct sunlight for at least half of daylight hours. The shelter must also be insulated against any extreme hot or cold temperatures.

Agriculture and Market Law 353-d

Individuals may not leave animals inside a vehicle during extreme temperatures without proper ventilation or warmth. Officers are required to locate said owner at the time of the discretion. If the owner cannot be located then police officers have the right to retrieve the animal by any means necessary and cannot be held accountable for property damage.

Agriculture and Market Law 355

This law criminalizes the neglect of animals by abandoning them. This includes leaving a disabled animal in the street for an extended period of time as well as leaving an animal at a vet clinic or boarding center. An animal owner has three hours to pick up their disabled animal from the street after being notified. The owner of any animal left at a vet clinic or boarding center past the pick-up date is notified by mail to pick up their animal. The pet owner has 20 days to pick up their pet or it will be taken to the local animal shelter. The owner will still have to pay for any fees that are owed to the vet clinic or boarding center.

Evacuations, Fire Drills, and Campus Breaks

During an evacuation of campus, all pets and domestic animals are to be removed from campus. Pet owners are reminded that during an evacuation, no one remains on campus and power may be shut down; therefore abandoned animals may suffer from hunger and be subjected to discomfort. There will be no exception to this rule. Individual pet owners are required to develop a personal disaster plan that addresses pet removal in the event of evacuation. Registration records are held by Residential Life, so that during health and safety checks, staff can confirm that these pets have been removed. Students found responsible for abandoning an animal will suffer revocation of eligibility.

During fire drills, pets must be appropriately collared and leashed, then removed to the designated meeting place. In the event that a drill occurs during owner absence, building staff will not remove pets from the owner’s room. Pet owners are prohibited from entering campus buildings during either actual occurrences or drills.

Questions should be referred to the Director of College Housing or members of the Pet Council.


Please be sure to read the application carefully and answer each item (leave no blanks). If you have questions, contact Residential Life 607-587-4326.

The veterinary evaluation form must be submitted, but does not need to accompany the original application.