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A service dog who is on a leash assists someone in walking across a street on a nice sunny day.

Service and Emotional Support Animals

Service animals and emotional support animals play essential roles for people with physical and/or mental disabilities.  

The Minnesota Human Rights Act helps ensure individuals with service animals and/or emotional support animals can live with dignity, free from discrimination in housing, employment, and public places.  

If you believe you have been discriminated against, report the alleged discrimination

Service Animals

A service animal is a dog -- or, in rare cases, a miniature horse -- that is specially trained to perform specific tasks for a person with a disability. A service animal might guide an individual with vision impairment, detect seizures, or keep individuals calm during a panic attack. 

Emotional Support Animals

An emotional support animal – sometimes called an “ESA” or “companion animal” – can be any type of animal that senses an event or helps alleviate symptoms of a disability. ESAs commonly support people who have anxiety, depression, and many other disabilities. 

What the Law Covers

An emotional support animal sits on a couch in a home next to their owner.


Landlords and tenants

A person works at their computer while their service dog is next them. The person is petting their service dog while writing on a notebook in front of their computer screen.


Employers and employees

A service dog puts their head on the lap of their owner who uses a wheelchair. The owner is smiling and petting the dog.

Public Places

Businesses and patrons

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