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GVSU Agrees To Pay $40,000 To Student Because They Restricted Her Access To Therapy Guinea Pig

Guinea pig
Justin Sullivan, Getty Images

I have been the proud owner of three different guinea pigs, and I can say that they make great pets. They are certainly cute enough and they are very personable as well. But as a service/therapy animal? I didn’t think so at first, and neither did Grand Valley State University. According to the news, the guinea pig is having the last laugh today!

Kendra Velzen, a student at Grand Valley State University suffers from depression and has a pacemaker. For those two ailments, her doctor wrote her a prescription for a therapy pet…a guinea pig. When Velzen moved into a pet free dorm on the campus of GVSU, she petitioned to have the guinea pig with her as “emotional support”. The school agreed, with restrictions. She could not take the therapy pet to classes or to meals. For those restrictions she filed a lawsuit with the school, claiming that she was not granted full access to her therapy pet under federal housing laws.

Kendra Velzen, who is 28, and Grand Valley State University have reached a settlement in which she will receive $40,000, although the university maintains that it never “acted wrongly or failed to act in any way with regard to Kendra Velzen.”

Do you think that a therapy guinea pig is a little over the top? Do you think that the $40,000 settlement is fair, or completely unjustified?

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