ESAs in CP Housing

There are several reasons a person may have an Emotional Support Animal (ESA), but bringing one to Disney can prove difficult for some. Here is my experience bringing my ESA, Violet, down to Orlando. In order to bring your support pet with you on your Disney College Program, first they must be approved by Disney’s Health Services. Fill out the Medical Accommodation Form with your doctor, send it in by fax or snail mail, and make sure you call to check that they received the form. I had to fax mine twice because they didn’t get it the first time. Then a representative from health services called me to confirm the information about my ESA. After that everything was set for our arrival!

Once you get down to Disney College Program housing, there are a few rules about ESAs:

  1. They must be crated while in the apartment alone.
  2. They are not allowed at housing events.
  3. They are not allowed in other DCP apartments.
  4. They must be quiet while in the apartment, especially during quiet hours (this mostly applies to dogs).
  5. You must pick up after them outside (again this is mostly for dogs).
  6. They must not cause any damage to the apartment or furniture.

For liability reasons, DCP participants with an ESA will live in a 1 bedroom apartment without any roommates and pay for the same rent as if you did have a roommate. I was placed in the Commons which has a washer and dryer in the apartment and wood floors. I pay a little more than I would at the other complexes, but I think it’s totally worth it.

Every ESA also gets their own housing ID with a picture. You can take the picture before and email it to the service center, or they can take the picture on your arrival day at check-in. Each time you and your ESA enter any of the complexes you will have to present both housing IDs.

When I came down for my program, there was not a lot of information to be found on ESAs in the Disney College Program. Hopefully this helps, and please ask me any questions you may have that I didn’t address.

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10 thoughts on “ESAs in CP Housing

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  1. Hi Allyson,
    I just got accepted into the Fall 2018 DCP!!๐Ÿ˜„ Iโ€™m super excited, but one of my biggest concerns was my ESA & if they were able to go with me. I swear I tried doing research on it since last year & couldnโ€™t find anything. But then I came across your post & I felt a light of hope. My psychologist is currently looking over the medical form & Iโ€™m going to revisit her this week. She seemed concerned & was wondering if they would prefer to have a psychiatrist approval instead, but I have my reasons for not seeing one due to a bad experience. Was it difficult to get the approval & did they specify that it needed to be a doctor with a particular specialty? I would really appreciate a response if possible!๐Ÿ˜Š
    Thank you!!๐Ÿ™๐Ÿผ

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    1. CONGRATULATIONS!!! You’re going to love the DCP! I know when I got accepted I couldn’t find any information on ESA’s, so I’m glad my blog was able to help someone!
      My general practitioner and I filled out the paperwork. I think as far as Disney is concerned, they want to hear from whichever medical professional knows the most about your diagnosis and treatment. I don’t think it needs to be a specialist unless they are the one currently helping with your treatment. My biggest obstacle with approval was making sure Disney received the paperwork. I recommend calling shortly after you send it in to double check.
      Good luck on your DCP adventure!

      Oh! and just a heads up. When I was leaving my DCP, Disney had just announced that they were raising the prices for each apartment including a significant increase on 1 bedrooms (I paid $130/week, but the increase was $200/week). Don’t be afraid to look at apartments off property if you need to because of cost.

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  2. Hi, I sent in my paperwork last week through fax. Did you hear back from them afterwards or how long did the process take?
    Thanks ๐Ÿ˜Š

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    1. I actually had to send my paperwork in twice. I waited a month after I sent it the first time, but never heard from anyone. An hour or so after I sent in the paperwork a second time I called to make sure they received it. Then I heard from Disney about a week afterward. I was Spring Advantage and arriving mid May, so I think they probably moved me up to the top of the pile.

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      1. Did having your ESA & not having roommates affect how other CPs saw or treated you? Were you still able to have a good social life even when you were busy working & taking care of your ESA?

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  3. Hi, Iโ€™ve gotten approved to take my cat with me as an ESA and I was wondering if you could tell me if I had to bring her to check in with me/

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    1. It depends a little bit on your situation. I did not bring my dog, Violet, with me to check-in. On my schedule I had casting immediately after check-in and I wouldn’t have had time to unpack my car and get Violet’s crate set up beforehand. I was fortunate enough to have family helping me that day, so Violet was able to stay back at the hotel while I checked-in. Then, I had to go to the housing desk and ask them to print Violet’s ID before I brought her onto property. If you plan on doing something similar, just make sure that you have sent in a picture of your cat so they can make her ID. You are able to bring your cat with you to check-in as well (and I think this is how most people do it) and Disney can take her picture and make the ID then, but I would make sure she’s in a secure carrier.

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      1. Thanks for the info. I know Iโ€™m scheduled to check in at 8:45 with Casting at 9:30 so I was curious to know how itโ€™d work. I sent in a picture of her the same day I sent in proof of her shots being current so I was curious how thatโ€™d work. Thank you so much for the help!

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    1. You should be able to click the link in my blog above to open a pdf version of the form. It is the same form they have been using since 2014 and was current as of May 2017, so unless they’ve updated it you should be fine printing of this form. As for fees, you will probably have to pay part of them before you’re medical accommodation will be approved. I can’t remember exactly which fees I had to pay when, but I know I paid the initial acceptance fees before sending in my accommodation request.

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