Shopping with a dog is not easy, but it is an excellent social practice.

Take Your Dog Shopping! Here Are 5 Major Retail Stores That Allow Dogs

Today we’re talking about shopping with your dog. 

We love our dogs so much that we want them by our side as we browse the latest sale on knit sweaters. And you know what? They love it too!

For some, it’s that simple. We like the company. For others, it could be to avoid the dreaded symptoms of separation anxiety that plagues many dogs. And other owners simply can’t afford to drive back home every couple of hours for potty breaks.

Shopping with a dog is not easy, but it is an excellent social practice. Start with level 1 stores like PetSmart or Petco, where animals are always welcome.

But if you think both you and your dog have graduated from non-pet-related retail stores, then you’re in for a treat! 

We’re listing 5 major retailers that allow pets into their stores.

Never again will you leave a play session, and your dog is still energized. Check out Runball exercise toys for the ultimate playtime session!

Before You Go Shopping

Now, this is important. 

Before you leave the house, make sure you call the store ahead of time to ensure they will allow you to bring Todo into the building. 

The terms “pet friendly” and “service-animal friendly” are different. 

A service animal is an animal, usually a dog, that assists someone with a disability, like blindness or seizures. Pet-friendly stores do not require proof that your animal is a service animal. Your pet is free to come and go with you if it is leashed. 

Speaking of leashes, make sure your dog has a solid harness or collar and a strong leash that won’t allow too much freedom. 

Large dogs like Great Danes may not work for every store. Some stores may only allow small dogs and not large dogs. Again, call ahead and ask what their animal policies are, and be sure to abide by them.

Before we dive into the list of pet-friendly retail stores, a quick reminder that this list does not discuss service animals. Only pets.

Sound good? Great! Let’s dive in.

RELATED: Should Dogs Wear Shoes?

5 Major Retail Stores That Allow Dogs

Pottery Barn is very open with their pet policy so long as animals are leashed and well trained.

1. Pottery Barn

Pottery Barn is open with their pet policy if animals are leashed and well trained. Pottery Barn is a high-end home furniture and decor store. The next time you’re shopping for a throw pillow or a new dining table, take Max along and see what he thinks!

2. Apple

Apple doesn’t have its pet policy posted online. Still, several customers have brought their well-behaved dogs, and Apple has been okay with it. Just make sure you call ahead to ask, and always leash your pet. 

3. LUSH Cosmetics

Not only does LUSH Cosmetics fight against animal testing, but they also allow pets in their store! LUSH goes above and beyond its values by treating all animals with kindness- including your dog!


Believe it or not, Barnes & Noble allows pets in their store! Not every store will allow pets. Each store abides by different health codes according to their non-service animal policy. Call ahead to your local B&N and ask if pets are allowed.

5. ACE Hardware 

ACE Hardware, along with many other hardware stores, welcomes all dogs to their store. Hardware stores are great for dogs because of their wide aisles. Remember, call your ACE Hardware store before arriving to verify. 

RELATED: Why Does My Dog Follow Me Everywhere?

What About Grocery Stores?

Animals that are not service animals are not allowed in grocery stores. Typically any place where food is prepared and sold forbids non-service animals.

Federal health and safety regulation laws prohibit non-service animals because of sanitation purposes. 

Could you imagine opening a package of tasty deli meat only to find dog fur stuck to it?

You wouldn’t want to eat it. You may not want to shop at that store ever again. This is a big reason why federal law forbids non-service animals from entering the store.

Animals that are not service animals are usually not allowed in grocery stores.

5 Major Retail Stores That DON’T Allow Dogs

As much as we want to take our dogs everywhere, not every major retailer will allow dogs in their store. You might be surprised to know which ones don’t allow pets. 

In a similar fashion, we’ve listed 5 significant retailers you might be shocked that don’t allow pets into their store.  

1. Target

Target is a retailer that sells home decor, clothing, and food. Because it’s a grocery store, it cannot allow pets in its building. 

2. Ikea

IKEA in the U.S. has allowed service dogs into their building, but pets are not allowed.

3. REI

You’d think animals would be allowed in REI because hikers take their dogs on hikes. However, REI decided to ban pets since some people are allergic, and other customers would prefer to not have animals in the store.

4. Walgreens

Walgreens does not openly allow pets in their store, but customers have reported bringing their dogs inside. It’s typically left to the discretion of the store manager. Since Walgreens sells both pharmaceuticals and food, it’s best to keep Fido home and shop alone at Walgreens.

5. Sam's Club

Sam’s Club is a place where food is prepared. Therefore pets are not allowed unless your pets are also service dogs.

RELATED: Big vs Small Dogs: What Are The Pros And Cons?

Should You Take Your Dog Shopping With You? 

Outings are an excellent opportunity to socialize your dog, but not every dog can handle the adventure. Some dogs have anxiety from abuse and show aggressive behavior in certain situations. 

Other dogs may want to bark at everything. If your dog is a barker and doesn’t know when to quit, a non-pet-related store isn’t a good idea. Bringing your dog on your shopping adventure is fun, but not at the expense of other people’s enjoyment.

Remember to call ahead, bring a strong leash, and of course, have fun!

Want to treat your furry friend? We have homemade dog treats and toys that will satisfy any pooch.