Is Target Pet Friendly? Everything You Need to Know

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Written By Ramis Kalkan

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For pet owners, taking their furry friends along for errands can be a fun and convenient way to spend time together. However, not all stores are pet-friendly, and it can be challenging to know which ones are. Target, one of the largest retail chains in the United States, is a popular destination for many shoppers, but is it pet-friendly?

According to Target’s official policy, pets are not allowed in their stores, with the exception of service animals. This policy applies to all of their locations, including their flagship stores, small-format stores, and Target Express stores. While it may be disappointing for some pet owners, Target’s policy is in place to ensure the safety and comfort of all their customers.

While Target may not be pet-friendly, there are still plenty of other stores that allow pets. Petco, for example, welcomes all pets, and many other pet stores and pet supply stores also allow pets inside. Additionally, some stores may allow pets on a case-by-case basis, so it’s always worth asking a store’s staff members if you’re unsure about their policy.


Target Pet Policy

Target has a strict pet policy that only allows service animals on its property. This policy is in place to ensure the safety of all customers and to maintain a clean and sanitary shopping environment. Anyone who brings a pet into a Target store, other than a service animal, will be asked to leave.

General Pet Policy

Target’s pet policy does not allow pets, even those secured in a carrier, to enter their stores. The only exception to this rule is for service animals that are trained to assist individuals with disabilities. Service animals are allowed to accompany their owners at all times, including in shopping carts and baskets.

Exceptions and Restrictions

Target’s pet policy is strict, but there have been some exceptions to the rule in the past. In some cases, Target has allowed pets into their stores for special events or promotions. However, these events are rare and usually require pre-approval from management.


It’s important to note that emotional support animals and therapy animals are not considered service animals under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and are not allowed in Target stores. Additionally, pets that are not service animals are not allowed in Target’s outdoor dining areas or on their patios.

If a customer brings a pet into a Target store, other than a service animal, they will be asked to leave. If they refuse to leave, Target may involve law enforcement.

Can You Bring a Dog into Target?

Many dog owners wonder if they can bring their furry companions along while shopping at Target. As previously mentioned in this blog post, Target has a strict policy prohibiting pets, including dogs, inside their stores. The only exception to this rule is for service animals that are trained to assist individuals with disabilities.


Are Cats Allowed in Target?

A common question among cat owners is whether or not their feline friends are allowed in Target stores. As mentioned earlier in the blog post, Target has a strict no-pet policy, which applies not only to dogs but also to cats. The only animals allowed inside Target stores are registered service animals that are trained to assist individuals with disabilities.

It is essential for cat owners to respect Target’s policy and understand that it is in place for the safety and comfort of all customers.

If you still want to shop at Target with your cat, consider using Target’s online shopping options or curbside pickup service. This way, you can conveniently purchase items without violating the store’s pet policy or leaving your cat unattended in the car.


The Exceptions to Target’s No Pet Dogs Policy

As a dog lover, I always wish to take my furry friends with me wherever I go, including when I go shopping. Being one of the largest retail stores in the United States, Target’s strict “no pet dogs” policy can be disappointing to those who love to bring their pets on their shopping trips.

However, are there any exceptions to this policy? In this section, we’ll look at the possibility of seeing dogs in Target despite their rule. Additionally, we will also discuss the topic of service dogs and if they are allowed inside Target.

Possibility of Seeing Dogs in Target

The possibility of encountering dogs in Target stores is low as the company strictly prohibits pet dogs and only allows service animals.


This is due to health regulations that prohibit animals’ presence in an establishment where food is sold. Besides, grocery stores are governed by state and local regulatory bodies. Hence, Target has restrictions on dogs’ entry to maintain a hygienic environment for shoppers.

However, exceptions may arise when service animals accompany people with disabilities. It is vital to note that emotional support dogs do not have any legal protection under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Planning ahead and opting for home delivery or pickup services can be useful while running errands with pets.

Pro Tip: Always check store policies before taking your furry friends along when shopping.

Service Dogs in Target

Dogs that are trained to perform specific tasks and provide assistance or support are permitted in Target stores. These dogs are commonly known as service dogs.

Service dogs in Target must be leashed or harnessed, and under the control of their owner at all times. They are allowed to accompany their owners into any area of the store where customers are normally allowed.

It’s important to note that emotional support animals, therapy animals, and other types of dogs that do not serve a specific function do not qualify as service dogs.

Pro Tip: Always remember to bring documentation verifying your dog’s status as a service animal when visiting Target or any other public establishment.

Sorry emotional support dogs, Target’s policy only recognizes service animals as legitimate companions in-store.

Can Emotional Support Dogs Enter Target?

First, it’s important to understand that emotional support dogs do not have the same protections as service dogs under the ADA. However, there are state laws that give specific access rights to these dogs. We will examine the different state laws on emotional support dogs and their implications for Target stores.

Emotional Support Dogs Not Protected by ADA

Dogs for emotional support are not protected by ADA regulations. While service dogs are permitted in Target stores, emotional support animals do not qualify as such and therefore cannot accompany their owners. Target, like other retailers, adheres to state and local health regulations concerning pets inside stores, but service animals are allowed due to their legal designation. It is essential to note that state-specific laws may enable emotional support animals in some scenarios.

If you need to go shopping with your pet dog, consider checking out the list of dog-friendly stores at hand or opt for using home delivery services or order pickup options provided by some retailers.

A unique detail not covered is that it’s crucial to distinguish the difference between an emotional support animal and a psychiatric service animal. The latter category of service dogs warrants particular rights under ADA law.

According to the Americans with Disabilities Act(ADA), only dogs that are qualified as service animals according to strict definitions set out in federal law can enter public premises along with their handlers and trainers. Emotional support dogs do not possess such unquestioned reliance under the law and other legislation confined explicitly states them.

Research from Consumer Reports has found that a recent poll revealed about half of dog owners taking 1-2 car trips which included their pups yearly.

Before bringing your emotional support dog to Target, make sure to check your state’s laws and regulations to avoid any legal troubles.

Check State Laws on Emotional Support Dogs

When it comes to bringing emotional support dogs to Target, it is essential to check relevant state laws. Different states follow different regulations regarding emotional support animals. Some states have strict requirements for emotional support dogs and their owners, while others do not allow them in public places altogether. It is crucial to know the specific laws in your state before bringing your emotional support dog to Target or any other store.

Additionally, some states allow service animals only, while some may permit emotional support animals with a proper certification or documentation from a licensed healthcare professional. Therefore, it is best to research and stay informed about the state laws where you live and plan accordingly before attempting to bring your emotional support dog into Target or elsewhere.

It’s worth noting that these laws are continually evolving and changing, so make sure you get the latest information on state regulations concerning emotional support animals.

According to,

Emotional Support Animals are protected by law; however, not all dogs can qualify.”

Pet-Friendly Products

Target is a pet-friendly store that offers a wide selection of pet products. From pet food to pet toys and beds, Target has everything you need to keep your furry friend happy and healthy.

Pet Food

Target carries a variety of pet food brands for dogs and cats, including Purina, Blue Buffalo, and Iams. They offer both dry and wet food options, as well as specialty diets for pets with specific needs. Target also has a selection of treats and snacks for pets.

If you’re looking for more natural and organic options, Target also carries brands like Simply Balanced, which offers grain-free dog food made with real meat and vegetables. They also have a selection of pet food made with limited ingredients for pets with allergies or sensitivities.

Pet Toys

Target has a wide selection of pet toys for dogs and cats, including plush toys, chew toys, and interactive toys. They carry popular brands like KONG and Chuckit!, as well as their own line of pet toys.

If you’re looking for eco-friendly options, Target also has a selection of pet toys made with sustainable materials like recycled plastic and natural rubber.

Pet Beds

Target offers a variety of pet beds for dogs and cats, including orthopedic beds, bolster beds, and crate mats. They carry popular brands like K&H Pet Products and Petmaker, as well as their own line of pet beds.

If you’re looking for something more stylish, Target also has a selection of pet beds that are designed to blend in with your home decor.

Pet Services

Target does not offer pet services in their stores. However, there are several pet-related items available for purchase, such as food, toys, and accessories.

Grooming Services

Target does not offer grooming services for pets. However, they do sell grooming supplies such as shampoos, brushes, and clippers. These items can be used at home to keep pets well-groomed.

Veterinary Services

Target does not offer veterinary services in its stores. However, they do sell pet medications, supplements, and first aid supplies. These items can be used to treat minor illnesses and injuries. For serious health concerns, it is recommended to seek veterinary care from a licensed professional.

What To Do When You Need To Go to Target With Your Dog?

As a dog owner, going on errands can be a challenge when our pets need to stay home. So, what happens when you need to make a run to Target, and your furry friend is itching to join? In this section, we’ll discuss ways to make the most out of your Target trip when accompanied by your dog. We’ll explore the convenience of home delivery and order pickup options and how they can eliminate the need to bring your pet into the store altogether. Additionally, we’ll discuss practical tips for running errands with your dog and what rules Target has in place regarding pets on their premises.

According to a recent survey conducted by Rover, nearly one-third of dog owners take their pets with them on errands at least once a week. This trend has led to a growing demand for pet-friendly stores, and Target has become a favorite for many.

Target’s Convenient Options for Delivery and Pick-Up

Home delivery and order pickup are convenient options offered by Target. Consider the following points when opting for these services:

  • Target provides same-day delivery for eligible items, which can be accessed through their website or app.
  • The store also offers free in-store pickup for orders made online, which can be collected at designated drive-up spots or inside the store.
  • Delivery fees vary depending on distance and speed, whereas in-store pickups are free of charge.
  • Certain restrictions apply to bulky items that cannot be delivered or picked up in stores. These restrictions differ across locations, so it is advisable to check with your local Target store before making a purchase.
  • Pets are not permitted inside the pickup desks or drive-up spots, so owners will need to park elsewhere and bring backup help if they intend to bring their pet with them to collect their purchases.

If you choose to use home delivery or order pickup from Target, you can ensure maximum convenience by keeping certain details in mind. Consider ways for minimizing trips into stores during peak business hours by scheduling deliveries and pickups earlier in the day. Also, keep an eye out for package drop-off points near your house. Doing so will make purchasing from Target easier than ever before!

Key Takeaways About Target’s Pet Policy

  • ✅ Only service dogs are allowed in Target stores due to health regulations.
  • ✅ State laws prohibit admittance of pet dogs into grocery stores like Target.
  • ✅ Misrepresenting your dog as a service dog in Target is breaking the law and can come with a fine of up to $1000.
  • ✅ Emotional support dogs do not have the same rights as service dogs, but state laws may allow them in public places like Target.
  • ✅ Target offers home delivery and Drive Up options for pick-up, which can be convenient if you need to shop and cannot bring your dog inside.


Target is not a pet-friendly store. The company’s policy is to not allow any pets, except for registered service animals, inside their stores. This policy is in line with the FDA regulations, which limit grocery stores from allowing pets inside their premises.

While some customers may find this policy inconvenient, it is important to understand that it is in place for the safety and well-being of all customers. Pets can be unpredictable and may cause harm to other customers or damage store merchandise.

However, Target does offer a range of pet products online, including food, toys, and accessories. Customers can easily purchase these items from the comfort of their own homes and have them delivered to their doorstep.

For those who wish to shop with their pets, there are other pet-friendly stores available. Some popular options include Petco, PetSmart, and Tractor Supply Co. These stores offer a range of pet products and allow well-behaved pets inside their stores.

In conclusion, while Target may not be a pet-friendly store, customers can still purchase pet products online or visit other pet-friendly stores with their furry friends. It is important to respect Target’s policy and understand that it is in place for the safety of all customers.