No matter who you are or what breed of dog you have, we all want to think that we have the best-behaved dog ever to exist. They are our best friends, our cuddly buddies, and our partners in crime. We all probably believe that there is absolutely no reason why our pup shouldn’t be allowed to come on a shopping venture with us to Best Buy, right?
Sadly, it just isn’t as simple as that, and it can differ depending on where you are. Best Buy store managers have something to say about this.
“The Best Buy dog policy is not set on a national level. It is up to the store managers to decide. Some Best Buy stores won’t allow dogs inside unless that animal is a service dog, but some other stores are totally dog friendly. There is no dog policy set in stone; you would probably need to call ahead.”
This means that one store might be fine with you taking your dog in with you, but others may only let you take a service dog in with you, which means a dog that assists people with disabilities. If this is the case, you may find yourself challenged to ensure that the dog has the credentials for this upon entering the store.
You could go to a store that lets any dog in; as long as it is well-behaved, there are plenty of dog-friendly managers out there. It really just depends on where you are. Since Best Buy does not sell food, there are no food and hygiene issues at risk, and so the considerations in terms of safety or hygiene are totally different. Meaning, it is all down to the personal views of the store manager.
Is Best Buy dog friendly?
So, what we know so far accumulates to this, if your local Best Buy manager is dog friendly, they may let the odd dog in or have absolutely no issue with pets going in. It is totally up to their own views, and there is no policy surrounding dogs throughout all of Best Buy.
This means that your local Best Buy manager may also not be dog friendly and may only allow service dogs in. In some cases, some Best Buy managers may be really strict, not caring if you have a small dog in your purse, a support dog, or even a dog in a stroller; you would not be permitted to take them into the store. It’s really a game of chance and totally depends on the person in charge.
Why is it that some Best Buy locations don’t allow normal dogs to go in?
As harsh as it may seem, there are some very valid reasons why a normal dog may not be allowed into Best Buy. Some of the primary reasons are to do with health, safety, and contamination risks.
Let’s look at a few of the primary points that concern some Best Buy managers in this area.
- The biggest issue can be allergens. Some shoppers may suffer from dog hair-related allergies. This can cause major issues. So even if your dog is hypoallergenic, there is still a risk.
- Dogs may contaminate items in the store.
- Fleas and ticks are also a risk factor.
- Not everyone loves dogs; some people may be afraid of them, and taking them into the store with you could make others refrain from doing so, making the store lose customers.
- Not every owner has perfect control over their pet.
- Even the most excellently trained dog can make a mess on a store floor. We aren’t saying they will, but they could.
- A dog on a leash can still be a hazard in small, busy places like the aisles in Best Buy. This alone is a risk assessment you wouldn’t want to face.
Why are service dogs different?
Service dogs are a whole other ballpark. No matter what the store manager says, if you have a service dog, they can go into Best Buy.
Service dogs are generally very identifiable, they will often wear a brightly colored jacket, and owners are also able to provide proof with documentation.
If you are wondering why these dogs are different from normal dogs, then we have the answers. Okay, yes, they still have the same germs and behaviors as any other dog. But, there are some very key differences.
Service dogs are hardily trained, which means that they are trained not to urinate or defecate on any indoor floors. While this is true for many other dogs too, they are generally trained with a lot more verve. Similarly, they are also trained not to attack people and to be very calm under stress.
This makes them a much lower risk factor when coming into stores, and of course, they also serve a very important function of helping the disabled person shop. While your dog may be your best friend, some disabled people would perhaps not be able to shop at all without their service dog.
Policy differences in every store.
Since policies differ in every store, some may let you take your pet in, while others may not. If a Best Buy does not allow dogs in, then there will often be a sign outside it will usually read similar to this;
“Service animals are welcome. No pets.
Please contact your local health department if you see an untrained pet in the store.
Non-service animals are not permitted in stores unless express permission is given by the store manager.
Service animals are okay as long as they are individually trained to do work and perform tasks for a person who has disabilities.
Comfort, or emotional support animals, do not count as service animals.
We apologize for any inconvenience this causes.”
What about puppies?
Puppies, like children, are needy and require a lot of attention, so you may wonder if you can take your puppy into the store with you.
If the store is not dog-friendly and only accepts service animals, then no matter how cute and small your puppy is, they cannot join you in your shop.
Do dog strollers change things?
Dog strollers have become infamous in recent years, they have raised some interesting questions on whether or not they are okay to use and take your dog into stores in. As far as Best Buy is concerned, you cannot bring your dog into a store in a stroller at all. Only service dogs are permitted in their policy.
Now, there are good points on either side of this argument. Of course, a dog in a stroller does mean that they can’t make a mess on the floor, they won’t scare people who don’t like dogs, and reduce the risk of contamination.
However, there will always be people who think that simply taking your dog in a stroller to Best Buy is 100% acceptable. Sadly, a stroller does not eliminate contamination completely, nor does it get rid of issues related to allergies.
So, sorry, no dog strollers allowed.
What is the verdict on emotional support dogs?
There is so much confusion over the dog policy at Best Buy, simply because there really isn’t one. It is easy to understand this confusion, as some managers will be fine with you taking Fido into Best Buy, whereas others won’t.
Some Best Buy managers will say that emotional support dogs are not allowed in, but allow service dogs to enter, which can be confusing.
Then some customers do not want to see any dogs in the Best Buy aisles with them, at all. There are also the dog owners who vastly disagree with this.
There are plenty of heated conversations around this topic on social media, and plenty of people have so many things to say. Here are two points people have made that really show how heated this discussion is, especially when it comes to the topic of emotional support dogs.
Person 1- “I think that Best Buy should have a dog policy where only service animals are allowed in. I don’t want to see people walking their dogs into stores pretending it is for emotional support. Dogs should be tied up on their leash outside and should be asked to leave if they come in. Real service animals wear vests, indicating their main focus is on the owner, and bothering the animals will make it lose focus on the owner, resulting in harm to the owner. “
Person 2 (response)- “I totally disagree with this comment. PTSD dogs are emotional support and service dogs as well. The ADA does not require service animals to wear a vest, ID tag, or a specific harness. Also, service animals are not required to be certified, nor are they required to have proof of training or license. The Americans with Disabilities Act was written this way to protect the privacy of people with disabilities.”
This is obviously a very sensitive topic that can easily go from being about dogs entering stores to a debate on mental health, disabilities, and the privacy protection of the dog’s owners.
Obviously many stores will only allow service dogs into stores because other dogs may not be as well-trained, and they can also pose issues. However, the inclusion on the topic of emotional support animals makes things much more difficult, because it can depend on a number of factors.
For example, suppose a person who suffers from panic attacks requires an emotional support dog who can react and keep them safe during a panic attack. In that case, this can be considered a service dog in some ways, but may be more considered an emotional support dog if the dog was assigned due to mental health. This is a topic widely up for debate and needs a lot of consideration.
However, what we do know is that some Best Buys will let any dog in, while others will only let service dogs in. The whole setup is rather confusing; it is best to ring the store ahead of time if you want to take Fido with you.
Frequently Asked Questions
We have covered a lot of topics today, haven’t we? But there are so many other questions to ask. We want to cover them all. So, let’s finish up our dog talk about Best Buy, with some of the most asked questions about taking your dog shopping with you.
Can I take a small dog to Best Buy?
Small or large, a dog is a dog. Some managers will say that no matter how small your dog is and that they cannot enter, others may not mind. If their policy is for only service dogs, then that’s the rules, regardless of size.
Can I carry my dog into Best Buy?
Even if you can carry your dog, this still counts as a dog. People may still suffer from allergies whether your dog is on the floor, under your arm, in your purse, or even if you are giving it a piggyback.
Even though celebrities go around carrying small dogs in their purses or bags, they would still get asked to leave if the rules say no. Rules are rules.
What the manager says goes.
What about other US chain stores and dogs?
Plenty of other high-brand national chains have made headlines for their views on dogs, so, aside from Best Buy, who else has feelings about dogs in stores?
Walmart- In Walmart dogs are not allowed inside stores, unless they are a service dog. This policy is nationwide.
Lowes & Home Depot- There is no ban on dogs as there is no food being prepared. You can take your dog in with no problems.
Barnes & Noble- Similar ruling to Best Buy, it varies from store to store. Ask ahead in advance.
Petsmart- Of course, dogs can come in!