Does Walmart Allow Dogs? Current Walmart Pet Policy

Are Dogs Allowed In Walmart? Short answer: As of now, dogs and other pets are not allowed in Walmart stores. However, service animals (not including emotional support dogs) can accompany their disabled owners into Walmart as per the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA).

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Does Walmart Allow Dogs?

Non-service animals are not permitted in grocery stores under applicable food safety regulations. Service animals are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for persons with disabilities. Comfort or emotional support animals are not service animals.

This Walmart pet policy may be subject to change in the future, so it’s always best to check with Walmart store manager beforehand if you’re planning on bringing your pet into the local store.

Continue reading to learn everything there is to know about Walmart pet policy and find out if can you bring dogs into Walmart stores.

Is Walmart Pet-Friendly?

As mentioned above, it is against Walmart pet policy to bring pets into the store, regardless of the size of the pet or even if it is an emotional support animal. This policy applies to all animals, including small dogs, puppies, and even dogs that are being pushed in a stroller. Service dogs are the only exception.

Some people may think that they can get away with bringing their pet into the store if it is small or in a stroller, but this is not the case. If someone sees you with your pet in the store, they have the right to report it to the store manager and you will be asked to leave. 

Official Walmart Dog Policy. Does Walmart Allow Service Dogs To Enter The Store?

The official Walmart policy does not allow access to stores for non-service animals, which includes dogs. The rationale for this decision is based on food safety concerns. By allowing only service animals into the store, Walmart can help ensure that there is no contamination of food products. 

Official Walmart Dog Policy
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In addition, store entrances will have signs explaining this policy to shoppers. Walmart singles out food safety considerations as the reason for disallowing non-service animals into its outlets. 

By taking this stance, the retailer can help protect both its customers and employees from potential health hazards.

According to the Walmart website, they claim:

“Walmart welcomes service animals as defined by the ADA is our stores, and we recognize the important role they play in many of our customers’ lives. We do not allow pets in our stores.”

Walmart stores have signs posted at the entrances that indicate that only service animals are allowed inside:

“Non-service animals are not permitted in grocery stores under applicable food safety regulations. Service animals are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for persons with disabilities. Comfort or emotional support animals are not service animals. We apologize for any inconvenience.”

This policy is in place to ensure that all shoppers feel safe and comfortable while in the store. Service animal owners are encouraged to place a harness on their dog for added control, and to avoid busy times if possible.

Which stores allow dogs? You might be surprised at the answer:

Does Sam’s Club Allow Dogs Inside?

Does Target allow dogs? Is Target Dog-Friendly?

Are Dogs Allowed In Whole Foods Market?

Are Dogs Allowed In Publix? Is Publix Pet Friendly?

Does Dollar Tree Allow Dogs Inside?

Is Meijer Pet Friendly? 

What Are Service Dogs?

Service animals are defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities. Common examples of service dog tasks include:

Does Walmart Allow Service Dogs
Photo from (IG) @banjoservicek9
  • Providing assistance with mobility
  • Pulling a wheelchair
  • Picking up and carrying items
  • Retrieving dropped items
  • Alerting their owner to the presence of allergens or danger

There are many different types of service dogs, including but not limited to: guide dogs, hearing dogs, psychiatric service dogs, and seizure alert dogs. All service dogs must be trained to behave appropriately in public places like Walmart, and their owners are responsible for ensuring that they do not cause any disruptions.

Overall, Walmart is very accommodating to shoppers with service animals. As long as the dog is well-behaved and properly trained, the experience should be incident-free. However, it is always best to err on the side of caution and avoid bringing your service animal into the store during peak hours.

What Types Of Service Dogs Are Allowed In Walmart?

Service dogs that assist people with disabilities come in many different shapes and sizes, and perform a variety of tasks to help their owners. 

The most common type of service dog is a guide dog, which helps people who are blind or have low vision. These dogs are trained to lead their owners around obstacles, and stop at curbs and steps.

Other common types of service dogs include:

Does Walmart Allow Dogs
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  • Hearing dogs, which alert their owners to sounds; 
  • Mobility assistance dogs, which help people who use wheelchairs or have other mobility impairments; 
  • Medical alert dogs, which warn their owners of impending medical crises, such as seizures. 

Service dogs that perform these and other tasks are allowed in Walmart stores.

Are All Service Dogs Allowed In Walmart?

Yes! All service dogs are allowed in Walmart stores. As mentioned, both the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) protect service dogs and their owners from discrimination in stores like Walmart. However, there are some situations where a store employee or store manager may ask the owner and their animal to leave.

For example, if the service dog is considered to be a threat to health and safety in-store, a Walmart employee or manager has the right to ask the owner and their animal to leave and to exclude them from the store indefinitely. This is usually only done in extreme cases where the dog poses a serious threat, such as if it is aggressive or unvaccinated.

Service dogs are typically very well-trained and behave appropriately in public places like Walmart stores. However, owners should be prepared to answer questions from store employees about their animal’s training and behavior if asked. Additionally, service dogs should always wear a harness or vest that clearly identifies them as working animals.

Can Walmart Ask If Your Dog Is A Service Dog?

While Walmart employees and managers are allowed to ask if a dog is a service animal, they cannot ask for any proof of disability in the form of documentation. 

Can Walmart Ask If Your Dog Is A Service Dog
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This is because, under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), service animals are not required to have any specific certification or identification. However, many service animals wear bright colors on their collars, jackets, or leashes, making it easier for workers and store managers to determine if a dog is a service animal. 

In states like California, these types of identification are required by law.

These posts are great for when you want to know which stores allow dogs:

Is Walgreens Pet Friendly? 

Is Aldi Pet Friendly? Pet Policy

 Is Kroger Pet Friendly?

Why Are Service Dogs Allowed In Walmart?

Walmart allows service dogs in-store because they understand how important they are to many people’s lives. These animals are often better trained and more behaved than regular pets, making them a safer option to have around. Allowing people to bring their service dogs into the store helps those who rely on them for everyday tasks.

We’ll keep you updated with the latest news about places that allow your furry friend:

Is Safeway Pet Friendly?

Does Buc-ee’s Allow Dogs Inside?

Does Rite Aid Allow Dogs Inside?

What Are The Rules On Bringing Service Dogs Into Walmart?

The rules for bringing service dogs into Walmart are that they must be well behaved, under the control of their owner at all times, and not allowed to wander around or bark excessively.

They also cannot be carried in a trolley or stroller. In addition, service dogs are not permitted in areas of the store where food is prepared. However, other areas of the store may be designated as dog-free zones at the discretion of the store manager.

Do Service Dogs Have To Be On A Leash In Walmart?

A service dog is always required to be on a leash inside of Walmart. The dog’s owner is also responsible for controlling it properly at all times. This means that the dog must be well-behaved and not approach people. It must also be properly trained.

Are Emotional Support Dogs Allowed In Walmart?

Many shoppers wonder: “Can I take my emotional support dog to Walmart?”. No, emotional support animals are not allowed in Walmart stores. Emotional support animals provide comfort to people struggling with mental health issues, but they are not defined as service animals under ADA guidelines. This means that they do not carry out practical tasks that the owner needs help with on a day-to-day basis.

Service animals are registered by a licensed professional, whereas emotional support animals are not.

Why Normal Dogs Are Not Allowed In Walmart?

According to the FDA’s food service codes, animals in stores is unsanitary. Therefore, Walmart stores does not allow dogs other than service animals due to health and contamination risks. 

Some of these risks include:

  • Shoppers may suffer from allergies relating to dog hair
  • Dogs could contaminate foods
  • Some dogs can have fleas or ticks. 

Additionally, some people will be fearful of dogs, and not all dog owners are able to exercise proper control over their pet. Finally, even the best-trained dogs could mess on the store floor, and a on- leash dog can be hazardous in small and busy places like Walmart aisles.

Is It Okay To Leave Your Dog Outside Walmart?

Leaving your dog unattended outside of Walmart (or any other store with a no-dog policy) is not recommended as it can be dangerous for the dog. The weather could adversely affect them or someone might walk past and harm them. If you must go into Walmart, it is best to leave your dog at home unless they are a service animal.

Does The Walmart Pet Policy Vary By Location?

The Walmart pet policy may vary by location, with some store managers allowing individuals to bring pets that provide emotional support, and other stores prohibiting all pets. It is recommended to call your local Walmart store manager to confirm the policy before bringing a pet into the store. 

Stay in the loop with us and we’ll keep you updated on all places that allow your furry friend:

Does Sprouts Allow Dogs Inside?

Does Costco Allow Dogs & How Dog-Friendly Is it?

Is Trader Joe’s Dog-Friendly?

Is WinCo Foods Pet Friendly?

Does CVS Allow Dogs Inside?


Are Pets Allowed In Walmart Canada?

No, you are not permitted to bring your dog into a Walmart Canada location. Service dogs are the only ones who may enter Walmart outlets in Canada, as they do in the United States.

Are Dogs Allowed In Walmart If They Stay Out Of The Grocery Area?

Dogs are not allowed in Walmart, even if they stay out of the grocery area. This is because it isn’t possible to build a barrier to keep them from getting into the food aisles, and this may cause health hazards. Service dogs are the only exception.

Can I Take My Dog Into Walmart In A Stroller?

No, you cannot take your dog into Walmart in a stroller. Although dog strollers are becoming more popular, they do not remove all of the reasons why dogs are not allowed in stores. Your dog could still contaminate food or trigger allergies in other shoppers.

Can I Take My Puppy Into Walmart?

Are puppies allowed in Walmart? No, puppies are not allowed in Walmart stores. They are considered part of the dog category, so even though they may be small and adorable, you still cannot bring them into the store.

Can I Take A Small Dog Into Walmart?

If you’re wondering whether you can take your small dog into Walmart, the answer is unfortunately no. The Walmart dog policy is very clear; you cannot bring small dogs into Walmart unless they are service dogs. It’s unlikely that you’ll ever see a small dog in Walmart, even if it’s an emotional support animal.  


Bringing a pet into Walmart may seem like harmless fun, but it is actually against store policy and can be disruptive for other shoppers. If you need to bring your pet with you, there are plenty of other places that are more pet-friendly. Walmart wants to provide a safe and comfortable shopping experience for all of its customers, and allowing pets in the store would go against this goal.

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