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University to pay student after refusing guinea pig in dorm room

By Mason White 7:56 PM March 23, 2013
guinea pig 

By: John Roberts
(Scroll down for video) A woman sued Michigan University after they refused to allow her pet guinea pig stay in her dorm room.

Grand Valley State University settled a lawsuit filed by the student who was not allowed to keep her guinea pig, a service animal, in her bedroom.

The woman claimed that the pig is a trained service animal who she needs for emotional support, therefore she should be allowed to have the pig in her pet free apartment.

The lawsuit said that Velzen was not given permission to have her service animal in the pet free dorm room, despite having a doctor’s letter explaining her need for the animal.

Velzen has a heart condition that requires the use of a pacemaker. She also takes medication for depression, according to the lawsuit.

Grand Valley State University agreed to pay $40,000 to be divided by Kendra Velzen, the Fair Housing Center of West Michigan and the lawyer for the plaintiff’s attorney.

Grand Valley State University said they originally denied the petition to have her service pig in the pet free room because the Americans With Disabilities Act does not list a guinea pig as a trained service animal.

The school agreed to pay the settlement and allow Velzen to bring her guinea pig or similar animal if she decides to live on campus in the future.
Coed sues to keep guinea pig in dorm