Can You Bring Your Pet Into Walmart?

Pet Care


March 26, 2021

There is no denying the fact that dogs play a massive role in people’s lives. Dogs are companion animals that keep everyone company. Dogs can be there to support you emotionally, and dogs can be trained to be there for you physically as well.

For all dog owners, it is important to know whether or not you are able to bring your dog with you to places. This is important for people who need their emotional support animals with them to keep them calm and it is also important for people who need their disability assistance, such as seeing-eye dogs.

Knowing which stores allow for dogs to enter the premises is important for dog owners everywhere, especially when it comes to nationwide companies that have stores everywhere. One thing that you will need to know is whether or not your dog has the proper certifications to be allowed into places where dogs are typically not allowed.

Knowing the General Rule

The first place you should turn to when wondering are dogs allowed in Walmart is going to be to the company’s website itself. This is going to give you the most direct answer to your question and it is going to be the best place to start.

According to the company policy, dogs are allowed as long as they are service animals that are defined by the ADA. Aside from those assistance animals, pets are not allowed within the store. What this means for you is that as long as your dog is considered a service animal by the guidelines set by the ADA, your dog will be allowed to assist you in the store.

What Does This Mean for You?

Barring the chances of an especially lenient store owner making an exception for whatever reasons they may have, you will typically be asked to prove your dog’s credentials as a service dog. This means that you should make sure to have any credentials on you that you can use to prove that your dog is a certified service animal.

If you do not have these credentials, you should make sure that you are able to obtain them so that you can prove that your dog is a qualified service animal. If your dog is not a qualified service animal, as defined by the ADA guidelines (meaning that emotional support puppies are typically not accepted), then your dog will have to wait elsewhere.

If you cannot be in the store without the emotional support animal, then you may be able to talk to the manager about alternatives for you specifically.

Making Sure Your Dog’s Credentials Are Clear

To make sure that your dog can be clearly and easily defined as a service animal, you need to do what you can to make sure that the bright and colorful vest that denotes your dog as a working animal has it visible. You also need to keep the documentation on you so that you can easily show that your dog has a right to be with you.

In some cases, you may need some assistance to make sure that the dog’s vest is clear and easy for others to see. This is a precaution that you should be willing to take whenever you have a service animal so that you can avoid the least amount of trouble inside of the store.

Why Can’t You Bring Dogs in?

Everyone loves being able to share their puppies with others, and many puppies love the attention they get from being able to hang out with other people and get their attention from them. Even well-trained dogs can be a delight, even if they may not be as adorable as the chaotic puppy, so why aren’t they allowed in? The bottom line is that dogs are simply not allowed for the safety and cleanliness of the store.

Dogs can easily pose a danger to others. People could be allergic to dogs and dogs can start a fight if they aren’t trained to handle stressful situations, such as the overwhelming sights, smells, and sounds of a supermarket. Dogs can have ticks and fleas and people may be scared of larger breeds.

Dogs can be tough to control when they are stressed, and when dogs are stressed, they have a chance to defecate on the floor, contaminating the area. This is especially problematic in areas where there is food. Even dogs on a leash can get in people’s ways and be troublesome. These are just a few reasons why you cannot bring dogs that are not service animals into the store.

Why Are Service Dogs Allowed in?

No matter how much an emotional support animal has helped you out and has allowed you to keep yourself calm, according to FDA regulations, they still cannot be allowed into stores, especially where food products are sold. However, this may leave you wondering what makes service dogs so different, as they carry the same germs and are of the same animal type.

For service dogs, they go through a considerable amount of training to be able to serve their owners. This means that they are heavily trained not to defecate or urinate on floors, far more so than the standard dog or even emotional support dog has. This means that even if they have to go, they know how to hold it in until they are no longer in a store environment.

There is also the fact that service dogs have also been heavily trained to keep calm under circumstances that would make other dogs panic and bark. They know how to keep calm and address their owner’s needs and they are typically not drawn to meet and greet other people. In fact, many service dogs will snap at people who try to get too handsy as they have been trained not to be social, as they are working animals.

The Dog Policy as a Whole

As for the store specifically, dogs that are not certified and documented service dogs are not allowed to enter the store. This includes puppies, dogs in strollers, and emotional support dogs. This also refers to dogs that are being carried, small dogs, and so on. Chances are that if you do not have documents and vests to prove that your dog is a service animal, it is not going to be allowed into the store.

Another way to look at it is that the store itself is simply not a dog-friendly store, at all. The only dogs that are allowed to go into the store are working dogs that are there to assist their owners, not to be cute or not to keep the owner company. The dogs that are allowed in the store are there to make sure that their owner is able to get around safely and that the owner is taken care of in whatever way the dog has been trained to help the owner with.

For many people, viewing the store as not dog-friendly is a much easier way to look at it than to try and see whether or not a specific kind of dog qualifies for being able to enter the store.